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COVID-19 Update April 22, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Friday, April 24, 2020


April 22, 2020

 

COVID-19 Update


CMS Announces New COVID-19 Reporting Requirements for Nursing Homes
CMS announced in an April 19 Quality, Safety & Oversight memo (QSO-2026-NH) that nursing homes will soon be subject to two new reporting requirements – submitting communicable disease data to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and providing COVID-related notifications to residents and resident representatives.
This announcement applies specifically to nursing homes and does not extend to assisted living. Please note that these requirements are not yet in place. CMS has not released all the details, and it has not identified the effective date when this reporting must begin, but this is what we know today:

Data Reporting to CDC

  • All nursing homes will report data directly to CDC about residents or staff with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, residents with severe respiratory infection resulting in hospitalization or death, or ≥ 3 residents or staff with new-onset respiratory symptoms within 72 hours of each other.
  • These CDC reports will be in addition to, and will not replace, infectious disease reports nursing homes already submit to local health departments. Unfortunately, this will result in duplication of effort.
  • CMS and CDC will provide nursing homes with specific direction on standard formatting and frequency for reporting this information through the CDC’s National Health Safety Network (NHSN) system, which is a healthcare-associated infection tracking system widely used by hospitals and by some long-term care facilities.
  • We do not know what specific data elements CDC will define or what data submission mechanism CDC will establish. Enrolling with NHSN has been a cumbersome process, historically, and we are hopeful CDC will develop a streamlined process.
  • CDC may perform on-site infectious disease surveillance, testing of healthcare personnel and residents, or other related activities, and CMS will expect facilities to cooperate with these efforts.

Resident and Resident Representative Reporting
CMS will also require nursing homes to provide COVID-related information to residents and resident representatives. CMS will finalize specific requirements through an expedited rulemaking process, but they have not yet published that information, so there is a lot we don’t know. However, the CMS memo signals that nursing homes will be expected to do the following:

  • Notify residents and representatives within 12 hours of the occurrence of a single confirmed infection of COVID-19, or the new-onset of respiratory symptoms among three or more residents or staff within 72 hours of each other.
  • Provide updates weekly, or each subsequent time a confirmed infection of COVID-19 is identified and/or whenever new onset of respiratory symptoms occurs for three or more residents or staff within 72 hours.
  • Include information on mitigating actions implemented to prevent or reduce the risk of transmission, including if normal operations in the nursing home will be altered.

Next Steps
LeadingAge North Carolina and the LeadingAge national team are working to obtain additional information from CMS, and we will report those details as soon as we have them.
As thisLeadingAge media releaseemphasizes, we are hopeful the reporting burden will be minimized, and that additional data will further inspire federal officials to prioritize allocation of PPE and testing supplies aging services provider settings, where it is desperately needed. We andLeadingAge national areadvocating strongly on your behalf and will share more news on our request to CMS this week.Please reach out by email if you have any questions about these new reporting expectations, and we will add them to a frequently-asked-questions resource for members.

Senate Passes the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act
Around 6 pm last night, the Senate passed the bill authorizing new funding for key programs that are important for LeadingAge North Carolina members engaged in fighting COVID. The Senate measure includes $300 billion more for the SBA Paycheck Protection Program which ran out of money last week; more than $50 billion for other SBA emergency loans; $75 billion more for the fund we call the Provider Relief Fund; and $25 billion for testing, with federal, state and local obligations to identify how they will implement testing. The House is expected to return on Thursday to pass the bill.

Advocacy on CDC Reporting Requirement
We are advocating on several fronts to eliminate or significantly change the nursing home CDC reporting requirements that were released on Sunday evening and referenced earlier in this update. LeadingAge national is meeting today with CDC officials and with CMS. LeadingAge national sent thisletterto HHS Secretary Alex Azar and CMS Administrator Seema Verma last night, urging that they rescind the requirement because it is duplicative and will increase consumer confusion and nursing home staff burden. They suggested one standardized reporting form for universal reporting to states, localities, federal agencies and the public. National is finalizing a legislative request that will be added to our “4th” stimulus bill requests.

COVID 19 Stimulus Bill Facility Eligibility Calculator
This tool (in concert with LeadingAge Wisconsin) was developed to help providers know what funding is available to them through the two Federal COVID 19 Bills that have been signed into law through April 16th, 2020, the Families First COVID Response Act (FFCRA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES). The tool allows members to enter facility specific information that will alert organizations to their potential eligibility for certain programs based on their inputs, as well as provide estimates on funds received if calculations are known. Here’s how to use the tool and interpret your results by section.

Inputs
Providers should enter information in the boxes based on 2019 data. All data entered should be numeric except for “Entity Type” and “Do you have an existing SBA loan?” which use drop down menus.

Potentially Eligible Programs
This section has columns for “Funding Program”, “Eligible?”, “Possible Amount”, “Type”, and “For more information.”

“Funding Program” states what the individual funding program is.

“Eligible?” returns a result of “potentially” or “not likely” based on user inputs.

“Possible Amount” returns of value of the possible amount that could be received based on user inputs. For programs that do not have readily calculable amounts, footnotes are provided for more information.

“Type” identifies if the program is a Grant, Advance Payment, Loan, Payment Deferral, Debt Forgiveness, Expense Repayment, or Increased Income.

“For more information” provides links to websites where users can find more information on the individual programs to investigate further based on the results of the calculator.

Provider Relief Fund letter to HHS
Aletter to HHS Secretary Alex Azar outlining our questions about the Provider Relief Fund was sent yesterday. Our questions are mostly seeking assurances about the first tranche of funds that was paid out on April 10 to providers who billed Medicare fee for service. We want to verify whether providers who accept funds but do not have a confirmed COVID-19 patient can keep the funds. We also seek guidance on qualifying expenses and losses and on the type of reporting and documentation HHS will require. Providers who do wish to return the funds need instructions on how to do that. The letter also urges the release of the next tranche from the remaining $70 billion. Next up, probably tomorrow, we’ll finish the list of considerations for providers before signing the terms and conditions.

Clarification on Hospice Telehealth
CMS confirmed yesterday on the hospice stakeholder call that the initial and comprehensive assessment for hospice can be done through telehealth, noting that it’s still critical to be able to assess the patient to get all the data needed. LeadingAge national documented this in an article last week.

Potential Partners for Affordable Housing Providers
This article is about new funds available under the Older Americans Act and the Community Development Block Grant program. Both programs could potentially support services for affordable housing providers.

LeadingAge National Day of Action
Today, April 22nd, would have been our LeadingAge Lobby Day on Capitol Hill. While we will not be meeting face to face with congressional offices, we will use this opportunity to encourage members nationwide to take part in a National Day Of Action and help support our key legislative asks with Congress. We will be asking Congress for the requests that were in this week’s alert, which can be found here:https://mobilize4change.org/Nk3Mm5K.

New QuickCast on Resiliencyon the LeadingAge National Hub
In this 12-minute QuickCast, Wayne Scott, shares strategies for coping with toxic stresses by taking stock in the things that make individuals strong and resilient. QuickCasts are free for LeadingAge members. Questions? EmailMeetings@LeadingAge.org.

New Source for Masks
Tiffany Roberson with Presbyterian Homes, Inc. shared with us that Wells Hosiery offers a face mask that is two ply tightly woven cotton, anti-microbial and water/ moisture repellent.They have ear loops that are comfortable and adjustable and do not have rubber/ elastic. Masks are washable. Contact Rodney Debusk, or at (336) 465-0546.

Food Bank Information Now Available
If you are able, donate food to support those who may be struggling due to the COVID-19 crisis. Find a food bank near you: feedingthecarolinas.org

Free-and-Reduced Lunch Program Unveiled

This new program will help families with children who receive free-and-reduced lunch purchase food while school is out. Learn more atbit.ly/34UT7av

NCDHHS Website Information
If you're getting info on COVID-19 from social media, make sure it's straight from reliable sources. Follow NCDHHS for the latest: bit.ly/2VNDWM4

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In an effort to help our leaders inspire and motivate their teams, here is today's tool:

“I don’t understand it any more than you do, but one thing I’ve learned is that you don’t have to understand things for them to be,”wrote Madeleine L’Engle inA Wrinkle in Time.

Check in question: We don’t understand this pandemic. Nobody does. Yet, it is. While we don’t understand it, together, we will get through it. What are you doing to take care of yourself so that you can get through the struggles and challenges of the day? How can we take better care of each other?

COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click here to view the entire page.Click here to view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. In addition, LeadingAge national keeps their COVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.

 

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org






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COVID-19 Update April 20, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Monday, April 20, 2020


April 20, 2020

 

COVID-19 Update


By the Numbers
As of 10:35 am this morning, North Carolina has had 6,764 positive COVID-19 cases in 93 counties, with 179 deaths. 79,484 North Carolinians have been tested since the pandemic started. 905 of state’s positive cases have been in skilled nursing facilities with 53 deaths. 37 nursing homes have had “outbreaks” (defined as two or more positive cases) in 25 counties. Congress and Administration Look at Additional Funds for Paycheck Protection Program

Engagement with StoryCorps Connect
LeadingAge is partnering with StoryCorps to share a new way for you to engage your residents and clients—even during the pandemic. StoryCorps Connect encourages older people to share their life stories through intergenerational discussions. Families and friends can record an interview with a loved one remotely with video conference technology. “We hope StoryCorps Connect will provide a source of connection, comfort, and meaning for elders across America,” said Dave Isay, founder and CEO of StoryCorps. Help the older people you care for strengthen bonds with their loved ones. Their stories will be preserved for future generations at the Library of Congress.Learn more about StoryCorps Connect.

COVID-19 Learning Tool Is $5 for Two Weeks
NextStep’s informal COVID-Ready Caregiver online course is designed to improve the safety of caregivers of all kinds working with COVID-19 patients in all settings. Through May 2, staff at LeadingAge members can use codeLEADINGAGE5at check-out to access the program for just $5.

Recognize Our Field with Careers In Aging Week
It’s Careers in Aging Week, and we need it this year more than ever. We are marking the week by encouraging workers to join our ranks and apply for your open positions on LeadingAge Aging Services Career Center(promotional materials and instructions for posting your jobs for free are available now). Join the much-needed recognition of our field usingthis easy toolkitof ideas and sample social media posts.

New Insights and Tools From LeadingAge
LeadingAge staff experts are developing essential guidance and tools, and curating the most relevant resources for aging services providers.

A completetimeline of insights, tools, and useful links is available here, so you’ll never miss an update.

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In The Secret, Rhonda Byrne wrote, “There is a truth deep down inside of you that has been waiting for you to discover it, and that truth is this: You deserve all good things life has to offer.”

Check in question: What is a truth about you that you have discovered during this pandemic? What have you learned about the value and worth of the work you do?

COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click here to view the entire page.Click here to view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. In addition, LeadingAge national keeps their COVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.




 

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org




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Member Update April 17, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Monday, April 20, 2020
Having trouble viewing this email? Click here to read in your browser.

April 17, 2020

The LeadingAge North Carolina Member Update is published twice monthly. Please click on one of the headers below to view that section.

Advocacy & Policy | Strategic Thinking | News & Notes
Professional Development | Value First

General Assembly Update: Short Session About to Begin
The General Assembly is moving forward with plans to hold its short session beginning April 28. We are hearing that the session will only last for a couple of days and concentrate on two things: (1) a bill that will attempt to align state statutes and administrative code with all of the waivers that have been coming down from the federal government, and (2) a bill that will focus on funding streams for sectors of the economy particularly impacted by COVID-19. The current rumor is that the General Assembly will come back in July for a longer session to consider the long-term impact of the virus and spend more time looking at action that needs to be taken to address those impacts. We continue to work with the Department of Insurance, the Medical Care Commission, and other key stakeholders on items of importance to our membership.

There have been so many unintended consequences and ramifications from COVID-19. One of those has been its impact on our sales tax issue work. Lu-Ann Perryman, our lobbyist, reports that issues that would have been considered during the short session are being crowded out by the total concentration on the virus. We are attempting to work on a provision for one of the bills that would delay any sales tax changes for CCRCs until after the beginning of 2020. Leadership within the General Assembly has been adamant about the two bills not being loaded up with issues not tied directly to COVID-19.

Have You Contacted Congress Yet?
Congress is developing the next pandemic relief package. Click below to contact your representatives now—and look for new Advocacy Action Alerts coming soon.
Contact Congress for Aging Services Relief in the Next Coronavirus Legislation Contact Congress for Senior Affordable Housing Relief in the Next Coronavirus Legislation

Governor Announces Next Step in Battle Against COVID-19

Governor Roy Cooper announced on Wednesday of this week a three-step plan to continue the state’s fight against the coronavirus. The Governor’s plan to stay ahead of the curve depends on progress in:

  • Testing: Identifying who has COVID-19 and working with private and public partners to increase testing capacity, expand testing sites and address supply challenges
  • Tracing: Acting quickly to stop spread through tracing and ramping up staffing and technology to determine who has been exposed when someone tests positive.
  • Trends: Knowing when to dial up or down social distancing by analyzing new data, including number of new cases, hospitalizations, deaths, protective equipment, supplies, hospital capacity and more.

Read more about the plan by clicking here.

Proposed SNF Rules Issued
LeadingAge national received the proposedskilled nursing facility andhospicepayment rules earlier this week.As usual, there’s a 60-day comment period.These rules are required by law, to update rates for providers, and they are often used to make changes in payment policy.LeadingAge national is sending an analysis next week and will begin working with you and your staff on comments.


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The Strategic Side Gig
In a perfect world, people might learn all they need to know in their day jobs. In the real world, that rarely happens — so consider serving on boards, as mentors, as volunteers, or in other extracurricular activities to develop diverse thinking and experiences. “Leaders who want to rise — and help their organizations thrive — need to find ways to expand their field of vision and build their knowledge, skills, and connections even as they carry on their daily work,” write Ken Banta and Orlan Boston in their article, “The Strategic Side Gig.”

5 Holes You Need to Plug in Your Brand Strategy
Many organizations ignore the flaws of their strategy until it's too late. Don't make the same mistake. Click here for an informative take on five things you can do now.

4 Ways to Plan for a Future Nobody Can Plan For
This article from Forbes magazine succinctly outlines four tools to use to navigate your business through an evolving and unpredictable future

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Beautiful Question Postcards
LeadingAge is partnering with TimeSlips and Harper Collins to offer Beautiful Question postcards to aging services providers for free. Postcards prompt residents and clients to consider questions like “What makes you laugh?” or “What gift would you give the next generation?” Cards can be delivered with meals, mailed to family, or even displayed in your community.See samples and order your cards here.

Communicating About COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic grows, it is crucial that members maintain transparent communication about positive cases with staff, residents, and families. We've createdtemplates you can use to share important information.

Meanwhile, LeadingAge isspeaking out in the media every dayto carry forward the truth about the incredible work you are doing in the face of this global pandemic. We’re fielding a record number of inquiries from national and trade press, and have created crisis communications materials to help you do the same. Here is aguide you can use to preparefor a COVID-19 outbreak in your community.

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At LeadingAge North Carolina, we understand that COVID-19 preparedness means it’s all-hands-on-deck for our Member Communities and our Business Members…including travel bans and social distancing practices. To that end, and in light of the President’s national emergency declaration, LeadingAge North Carolina has made the difficult decision to CANCEL our 2020 Annual Conference and Expo originally scheduled for May 18-21. The Golf Outing has also been cancelled. At the heart of this decision: we cannot in any way risk the health of the aging services staff we support or the elders we serve. While we believe this decision is prudent, we will miss gathering with everyone at the conference. We look forward to the 2021 Annual Conference and Expo to be held May 11-14, 2021 in Wilmington, NC, with particular anticipation.

 

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LeadingAge North Carolina members can enroll in Value First and participate in other Group Purchasing Organizations at the same time. The portfolio of more than 500 vendors includes food distributors, medical supplies, therapy, facility operations, furniture, equipment, technology, and construction services.

Accessing your Vizient Catalog has now also been made easier than ever! To find out how to register and access the online catalog, click on the graphic below.

LeadingAge North Carolina
222 N. Person Street, Suite 205 | Raleigh, NC 27601
Ph. 919.571.8333 | Fax 919.869.1811 | www.LeadingAgeNC.org

















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COVID-19 Update April 17, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Monday, April 20, 2020


April 17, 2020

 

COVID-19 Update


LeadingAge North Carolina COVID-19 Call-In Set for
Monday at 2 pm

Don’t forget to mark your calendars for Monday, April 20 at 2 pm for our weekly COVID-19 call-in. It’s your chance to share what you’re learning, seeing, and hearing with your peers around the state…and ask questions you may have. To access the call, please dial (201) 616-0675 and, when prompted, enter the passcode of 841692.

CNA Training Update from North Carolina Department of Health Service Regulation
We have received clarification from DHSR regarding the waiver below. While the waiver is in effect, skilled nursing communities can employ people not currently certified as a nursing assistant, as long as there is documentation that an RN has verified their competency prior to working.There is an 8-hour course from ACHA that is an option for the communities to help bridge the knowledge gap but does not replace the competency verification by an RN.

From CMS:
Training and Certification of Nurse Aids: CMS is waiving the requirements at 42 CFR §483.35(d), (except for 42 CFR §483.35(d)(1)(i)), which require that a SNF and NF may not employ anyone for longer than four months unless they met the training and certification requirements under §483.35(d). CMS is waiving these requirements to assist in potential staffing shortages seen with the COVID-19 pandemic. To ensure the health and safety of nursing home residents, CMS is not waiving §483.35(d)(1)(i), which requires facilities to not use any individual working as a nurse aide for more than four months, on a full-time basis, unless that individual is competent to provide nursing and nursing related services. We further note that we are not waiving §483.35(c), which requires facilities to ensure that nurse aides are able to demonstrate competency in skills and techniques necessary to care for residents’ needs, as identified through resident assessments, and described in the plan of care. Achieving adequate staffing levels may be a concern for SNFs and NFs during the public health emergency. CMS is temporarily waiving these requirements so they do not present barriers for SNFs and NFs to hire staff; the temporary waiver will help these facilities provide adequate levels of staffing for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Once the CMS waiver is no longer in effect then the temporary nurse aides will have to complete an official DHSR-approved training course and take the DHSR-approved competency exam and be listed on the NC nurse aide registry before they can continue to work as a nurse aide.

CDC Implements “Universal Source Control” Guidance
This week, the CDC released newCDC Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendationsfor Patients with Suspected or Confirmed Positive Diagnoses. The update includes the implementation of “universal source control” for everyone entering a health care facility. CDC guidance is asking that everyone wear a cloth face covering or a face mask including visitors and patients when in the facility. They also stated that cloth masks are not considered PPE and reiterated that surgical masks, if available, should be reserved for health care personnel.The memo also reads that everyone must be actively screened for fever and other symptoms prior to entering the healthcare facility.Finally, the guidance indicates that health care settings can forego contact tracing for exposures if they use universal source control and screening for fever and symptoms.

Seema Verma of CMS Provides Updates on Reporting
On an on-the-record call with the media yesterday, CMS Administrator, Seema Verma said that nursing homes would be required to report “real time information about outbreaks” to CDC.“We think it’s important for patients and employees to have as much information as possible about what’s going on in the nursing homes. We recognize there should be more reporting than to local health departments. You’ll be seeing some more information from us at the end of this week on that,” said Verma. (NOTE:CMS has not yet released anything about reporting.)

Video on National Healthcare Decision Day
Here is alink to a video featuring Dr. Eric Bush, Chief Medical Officer for LeadingAge member Hospice of the Chesapeake. In the video, Dr. Bush talks about National Healthcare Decision Day and why, in these uncertain times, it’s more important than ever to have a plan regarding healthcare decisions.

Today Is the Last Day to Reserve “Seats” for Free Coronavirus Training and Certification
Today is the deadline to secure free coronavirus training for current or potential future employees through NextStep. You may “purchase” (for free with the discount code) the “seats” now and access the training later (with no stated deadline for accessing/completing the training). To learn more and register, clickhereand then click on Employers - Get Seats. Remember to enter the discount code -COVIDCERTNOW- at checkout to secure your free seats.

Explainer on Hospice and Telehealth

This article on Hospice, Hospice Partners, and Telehealth in the Time of COVID-19 reviews the frequently asked questions about telehealth and offers strategies for working with other providers who serve residents needing hospice services.

Provider Relief Fund Payment Resources and New Attestation Portal Launched
Yesterday, Health and Human Services announced that itsProvider Relief Fund Attestation Portalis open. Providers who received payments from the $100 billion fund, created by the CARES law, must agree to the terms and conditions set by HHS, using the portal. If providers do not want to keep the funds because they think they may be ineligible, they must also enter the portal to inform HHS they will return the money. Providers can still contact HHS about the fund using the emailHOSPITALCOVID19@hhs.gov.

SBA loan funds depleted
LeadingAge national posted this article on the SBA announcementyesterday that the $350 billion authorized for forgivable loan funds under the Paycheck Protection Program are depleted. There is currently debate in Congress about how to appropriate new funding and how to expand the program to cover providers with more than 500 employees. We are preparing an action alert which we will share with you soon.

LeadingAge COVID-19 3:30 call Today
On today’s call, LeadingAge national will talk about advance care planning and testing. We’ll welcome Dr. Danielle Doberman of Johns Hopkins University to talk about advance care planning across all settings, from healthcare to housing to individuals’ own homes.To register for the call, go tohttps://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1365743381042881035. Please note: you only have to register one time and will be automatically registered for the 3:30 call every day (7 days a week) through April 26.

Additional North Carolina Resources

  • Looking for ways to help during the COVID-19 crisis? If you're eligible to give blood, schedule an appointment to donatetoday:rcblood.org/3bdBchh
  • Parents who need food assistance for their children can text FOODNC (or COMIDA) to 877-877 to locate nearby free meal sites.
  • If you've recently lost your health insurance, or even if you're trying to buy it for the first time, you have options. Learn more:bit.ly/2XGld7N

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In an effort to help our leaders inspire and motivate their teams, we will be providing a short excerpt or tool that you can use each day.

InThe Alchemist, Paulo Coelho says, “It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.”

Check in question: What is your goal for your life – your dream – and what are you doing today to continue pursuing your dream?


COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click hereto view the entire page.Click hereto view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. In addition, LeadingAge national keeps theirCOVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org









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COVID-19 Update April 15, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Thursday, April 16, 2020


April 15, 2020

 

COVID-19 Update

Handy Guide to Grants and Loans
Recent federal legislation has provided some additional or accelerated funding that can be accessed by nonprofit service providers impacted by COVID-19. Click here for a handy guide to these grants, loans, and advance funding opportunities

Action Alert- Congress is Developing the Next COVID-19 Relief Package Now-Contact Your Representatives Today for Aging Services Relief!
Congress has the opportunity to provide critical funding and resources for aging services providers throughout the country. Ask your Representatives to support aging services by including these key priorities in the next coronavirus bill:

  • $2.2 billion for rent and staffing supports, service coordinators, telehealth capability, and other assistance for the more than 2 million older adults served by federally assisted housing communities financed by HUD, the Rural Housing Service, and the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit program.
  • Priority access to PPE and testing, without which our residents, clients, and staff continue to be at significant and avoidable risk.
  • A $100 billion separate fund for aging and disability service providers to cover additional costs for PPE, cleaning supplies, staffing, and other needs associated with coronavirus.
  • Funding that enables our members to expand their capabilities by becoming extended or step-down entities.
  • A 5 percent increase in Medicare reimbursement rates to cover added compensation for staff.
  • Compensation for home health telehealth visits.
  • Grants to support Medicaid HCBS providers, including PACE programs, to strengthen care and services in the home for vulnerable older persons and persons with disabilities.
  • An 8 percent FMAP increase.

We need you to act now by emailing and calling your elected officials. Help us ensure Congress includes these needed resources in the next coronavirus legislation. Clickhereto send a message today!

Potential Source for Hand Sanitizer and Face Shields
Bobby Bernal, LeadingAge North Carolina’s Value Representative, notified us that CINTAS has some availability of hand sanitizer and face shields. The minimum order for the hand sanitizer (liquid not foam) is 1 pallet = 11 gallons per pallet = $5,760. They do not need to be delivered all at once. The face shields are 336 per box/case, $4.50 per mask (which includes shipment). One case =$1,512.If you are interested, please contact Bobby at (850) 509-8112 or rbernal@leadingageflorida.org.

Potential Source for Face Masks
Steve Rumbley from Cross Road Retirement Community, notified us of a potential supplier of face masks that are 99% antimicrobial and machine washable. They are provided by Bossong Medical, LLC located in Asheboro. Contact: Chris Yow, Vice President of Sales, cyow@bossonghosiery.com, (336)625-2175 Ext. 230

CMS Issues COVID-19 Transfer Scenarios for LTC Facilities
Yesterday, CMS released regulatory flexibility to long-term care facilities which includes guidance on necessary requirements when considering separating or relocating residents based on COVID-19 status.Blanket waivers were issued for certain CMS requirements, including physical environment and certain transfer and discharge requirements. Along with CMS’ guidance, specific relocation scenarios were attached to help provide clarification on the following: how to transfer residents between certified long-term care facilities as well as non-certified yet state-approved facilities, how resident care responsibilities would be handled, and who obtains Medicare reimbursement during this process. To see the full memo, click here.

Provider Relief Complaints and Feedback for Health and Human Services
We’ve heard mostly positive feedback about the payments from the HHS Provider Relief Fund (aka the $100 billion CARES payments to health care providers, recognizing their added expenditures and lost income). The US Department of Health and Human Services has set up an inbox for questions/complaints/feedback on the program. The email address is: HOSPITALCOVID@hhs.gov.

North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Releases Online Video Resource
NCDHHS has released resources on managing your overall health and prioritizing your overall wellness during COVID-19. Check out the latest by clicking here.

Medicare Proposed Rule Provides Inflation Adjustment of 2.3%
CMS last week issued a Proposed Rule that provides updates about the SNF PPS rates that will take effect October 1, 2020. CMS will follow up with a final rule on the October 1 rates around August 1.

CARES Act Temporarily Suspends Federal Student Loan Payments and Interest
The federal COVID-19 relief bill known as the CARES Act includes benefits that go beyond payments to individuals and financial assistance to health care providers. One of the lesser known benefits is a temporary suspension of interest accrual and monthly payments on some student loans. Under the CARES Act, no payments will be due and no interest will be charged on federal student loans from March 23 to September 30. Click here for more information.

CMS Nursing Home Stakeholder Call Today
The weekly CMS Nursing Home Stakeholder meeting is today at 4:30pm PM Eastern. Here’s the call-in information:
Wednesday, April 15th from 4:30pm – 5:00pm
Attendee Dial-In:833-614-0820
Conference ID:3770227
Web Link:https://protect2.fireeye.com/url?k=7d3ffbf8-216af2eb-7d3fcac7-0cc47adb5650-85d81913711edd45&u=https://engage.vevent.com/rt/cms2/index.jsp?seid=1888

LeadingAge COVID-19 3:30 Call Today

LeadingAge National will hold their daily 3:30p call. To register for the call, go tohttps://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1365743381042881035. Please note: you only have to register one time and will be automatically registered for the 3:30 call every day (7 days a week) through April 26.

HUD Vacancies and Evictions
HUD has added eight pages of guidance to their multifamily housing FAQs, including how to handle vacancies and evictions. A summary is available here.

HUD Forbearance Options
HUD issued three mortgagee letters with forbearance options for all FHA-approved MFH mortgages, and underwriting adjustments for Sections 223(f) and 232 Healthcare facilities. A summary of the flexibilities is available here.

Updated Rural FAQ

Rural Development issued an updated FAQ covering tenant income changes, waitlist management, and more. Check out our summary here:https://leadingage.org/regulation/rural-housing-guidance-tenant-income-changes-wait-list-management

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In an effort to help leaders inspire and motivate their teams…

Angela Duckworth, Author of Grit, defines grit as passion and sustained persistence applied toward long-term achievement. She contends the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent, but a passionate persistence.
Check- in question- What are some characteristics of our team that you believe help us sustain grit in our work?

COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click here to view the entire page.Click here to view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted information.In addition, LeadingAge national keeps their COVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.


LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org






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COVID-19 Update April 13, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Thursday, April 16, 2020


April 13, 2020

 

COVID-19 Update

LeadingAge NC Annual Conference and Expo Cancelled
At LeadingAge North Carolina, we understand that COVID-19 preparedness means it’s all-hands-on-deck for our Member Communities and our Business Members…including travel bans and social distancing practices. To that end, and in light of the President’s national emergency declaration, LeadingAge North Carolina has made the difficult decision to CANCEL our 2020 Annual Conference and Expo originally scheduled for May 18-21. The Golf Outing has also been cancelled. At the heart of this decision: we cannot in any way risk the health of the aging services staff we support or the elders we serve. While we believe this decision is prudent, we will miss gathering with everyone at the conference. We look forward to the 2021 Annual Conference and Expo to be held May 11-14, 2021 in Wilmington, NC, with particular anticipation.

COVID-19 Confirmed Positives in North Carolina Reach Nearly 5,000
As of yesterday at 10:45 am, the number of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases in North Carolina numbered 4,520…91 of the state’s 100 counties have been impacted. 81 North Carolinians have died as a result of the pandemic. 28 skilled nursing facilities in 21 counties have a confirmed outbreak (2 or more laboratory-confirmed cases) and seven residential care facilities in six counties have an outbreak.

HHS Disburses First $30 Billion in Provider Relief Funds

This past Friday,HHS announcedthat it had deposited the first $30 billion of the $100 billion Provider Relief Fund authorized in the CARES Act. All providers who billed Medicare FFS in 2019 got funding, in line with a formula. HHS said the funds aim to provide relief to providers in heavily affected areas AND providers struggling to keep their doors open due to healthy patients delaying care and cancelled elective services.In the announcement HHS said it would disperse the other $70 billion in a more targeted fashion, including areas more heavily affected by the COVID-19 outbreak, rural providers, Medicaid providers, and those requesting treatment for the uninsured.We anticipate the next tranche in a week to ten days.

New QuickCast in the HUB
Please check out the new LeadingAge National HUB QuickCast,Purposeful Reflection: Leading Through Uncertainty.In this 30-minute QuickCast, Judy Brown and Wendy Green explore six simple but powerful daily questions to help leaders at all levels stay centered and grounded during quarantine.

While you’re in the HUB, here’s a link to the other COVID resources you may have missed.

Fair Housing and Evictions Over COVID-19 Concerns
HUD and fair housing advocates see COVID-19 status as covered by the Fair Housing Act’s prohibition of discrimination based on disability, and HUD cautions strongly against evictions over concerns a COVID-19 positive tenant is a threat to others’ health. Here’sa LeadingAge article on the topic. The article references and links a HUD statement and a release from the National Fair Housing Alliance.

COVID and Large Medicare Advantage Plans
Here’s an analysis of policies of the large Medicare Advantage plans related to COVID-19.

Additional 1135 Waivers Released
As promised, thecharts on HHS blanket waivers for SNFshave been updated on the LeadingAge national Resources page. For SNFs, physician assessments may be delegated to NPs, PAs or clinical nurse specialists.


New PACE Guidance
CMS issued anew document applicable to PACE organizations, allowing them to submit updates on participant diagnoses for risk adjustment payment purposes via telehealth, rather than in person, visits. Notably, it limits this extension to Telehealth to audio and video, not telephone only. LeadingAge national is submitting a follow up to CMS to see why that is, since they otherwise are allowing telephone-only contact.

Letter to NACCRA
LeadingAge national CEO, Katie Sloan, sent aletter to NaCCRAto share our resources, extend support, and let them know they are in good hands with LeadingAge and our member communities.

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In an effort to help leaders inspire and motivate their teams…

Elizabeth Gilbert in Eat, Pray, Love wrote: “People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that’s what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.”

Check-in Question: Each of us has been influenced by many individuals. In these past few weeks who has influenced you most? Who has seen something in you and brought it to your attention so that you have the courage to continue the work you do here?

COVID-19 Information Pages

In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click hereto view the entire page.Click hereto view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. All business members are invited to share their COVID-19 resources by emailinginfo@leadingagenc.org. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted information.

In addition, LeadingAge national keeps their COVID-19 resource pageupdated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.


LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org




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COVID-19 Update April 10, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Thursday, April 16, 2020


April 10, 2020

 

COVID-19 Daily Update

 

LeadingAge NC Annual Conference and Expo Cancelled
At LeadingAge North Carolina, we understand that COVID-19 preparedness means it’s all-hands-on-deck for our Member Communities and our Business Members…including travel bans and social distancing practices. To that end, and in light of the President’s national emergency declaration, LeadingAge North Carolina has made the difficult decision to CANCEL our 2020 Annual Conference and Expo originally scheduled for May 18-21. The Golf Outing has also been cancelled. At the heart of this decision: we cannot in any way risk the health of the aging services staff we support or the elders we serve. While we believe this decision is prudent, we will miss gathering with everyone at the conference. We look forward to the 2021 Annual Conference and Expo to be held May 11-14, 2021 in Wilmington, NC, with particular anticipation.

Governor Issues New Executive Order with SNF Implications
Yesterday, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order Number 131, placing mandatory requirements on skilled nursing facilities. The order is effective at 5 pm today, April 10. The order also “strongly encourages the same measures, to the extent possible given constraints on the availability of personal protective equipment, for other kinds of long term care facilities, including adult care homes, family care homes, mental health group homes, and intermediate care facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities.” The order specifically mandates that skilled nursing facilities shall:

  1. Remind staff to stay home when they are ill and prevent any staff who are ill from coming to work and/or staying at work.
  2. Screen all staff at the beginning of their shift for fever and respiratory symptoms. This shall include:
    • Actively taking that staff member's temperature; and
    • Documenting an absence of any shortness of breath, any new cough or changes in cough, and any sore throat.
      If the staff member is ill, the facility must have the staff member put on a facemask and leave the workplace.
  3. Cancel communal dining and all group activities, including internal and external activities.
  4. Implement universal use of facemasks for all staff while in the facility, assuming supplies are available.
  5. Actively monitor all residents upon admission, and at least daily, for fever and respiratory symptoms (shortness of breath, new cough or change in cough, and sore throat), and shall continue to monitor residents.
  6. Notify the local health department immediately about either of the following:
    • Any resident with new, confirmed, or suspected COVID-19.
    • A cluster of residents or staff with symptoms of respiratory illness. A ··cluster" of residents or staff means three (3) or more people (residents or staff) with new-onset respiratory symptoms in a period of 72 hours.

CMS Issues Clarification on PPE Reuse
The FDA has updated their FAQs on reuse of cloth gowns and other personal protective equipment. Specifically, this allows that “cloth gowns that will not be used in a sterile field, such as surgery, can be reused if they are laundered in enzymatic detergent or per the hospital’s SOP.” Click here for a look at the new guidance.

CDC Issues New Interim Guidance for Workers Who May Have Had COVID-19 Exposure
Click here for a look at the CDC’s latest guidance for your staff that may have had COVID-19 exposure.

Small Business Administration Provides More Clarifications on Paycheck Protection Program
SBA officials have provided additional clarification on the Paycheck Protection Program, the federal government’s initiative to provide support to small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here for their latest Frequently Asked Questions document.

Duke, RTI, and UNC-Chapel Hill Provide Analysis on State-specific Modeling
Click here for an informative piece from North Carolina Health News about COVID-19 modeling specific to our state. Scientists affiliated with Duke University, RTI International and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill shared their findings with reporters on Monday as the number of COVID-19-related hospitalizations continues to climb. They looked at two questions: What would be the need for hospital beds if the state lifted the physical distancing restrictions included in the governor’s executive order set to expire on April 29? What would happen if those policies remained in place longer?

Nursing Homes Added to Amazon Preferred List for PPE
This note from Alyssa Odegaard, of LeadingAge Washington, came in at 8 pm last night: “I just got word that Amazon has added nursing homes, assisted living, and senior living to the priority list to buy PPE. They would just need to fill out and submit the following form.” Thanks to LeadingAge Washington for that hometown advocacy for all LeadingAge!

Federal Stockpile of PPE Nearly Depleted
The federal stockpile of N95 respirators, gloves, gowns, surgical masks, and other equipment needed to care for patients with COVID-19 is now nearly depleted, according to reports from theAssociated Press and other news outlets. A statement from the Department of Health and Human Services has confirmed that about 90% of federally held personal protective equipment has been distributed to state and local governments.The remaining 10% of PPE in the stockpile is reserved for federal workers and will not be distributed to the states.

PPE Guidance and Allocation for North Carolina

North Carolina’s process pertaining to PPE Allocation, and a letter from NC DHHS explaining it, is now available.

New Online Search Tool from NC 2-1-1
NC 2-1-1 has launched a new online search tool to help you find resources in your local community during the COVID-19 crisis.

FEMA Assistance for COVID-19 expenses
A few questions have come in about the FEMA Public Assistance Program for COVID-19 expenses.Thisexplainermay be helpful in sorting through the details.Bottom line? There are a lot of conditions that must be met and the process includes a lot of separate steps – this is not an easy application.It may be useful to some members, but we don’t anticipate that its use by LeadingAge NC members will be widespread.

HUD Official to Join LeadingAge National 3:30 call on Thursday, April 16
On Thursday, April 16, Toby Halliday, Director of HUD Multifamily Housing’s Office of Asset Management and Portfolio Oversight (OAMPO), will speak on LeadingAge’s daily COVID-19 3:30pm ET call. Please send questions in advance to Linda Couch at LeadingAge national.

Potential Mask Supply Identified
Paratus Service Group in Cary has availability for surgical and KN95 masks. Click here for more information. Thank you to our friends at K4Connect (LeadingAge NC bronze business member) for sharing this resource.

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In Toy Story 4, Woody said to Forky, “You have to understand how lucky you are right now. You’re Bonnie’s toy. You are going to create memories that will last for the rest of her life! Like it or not, you are a toy. Maybe you don’t like being one, but you are one, nonetheless. That is your job.”

Food for Thought for All Leaders: Read that line from the movie again but take out the word “toy” and replace it with the word “leader.” You are a leader. You might not like being one, but you are one. It’s your job to lead people. As a leader, you influence what your team thinks and how they feel about their work. But you have to understand how very lucky you are. You are creating memories that will last for the rest of your employees’ lives. You keep showing up for them. You continue to check on them -- each and every employee who works for you. You care about what happens in their lives. You keep telling them that they matter, that we will get through this, that the work they do is valuable, and that they are appreciated. These small actions are meaningful.

Check-in: How will you approach your leadership and ensure your team feels supported in their work?

Questions? Ask LeadingAge National, Your State Association, or Each Other
There are many ways to get help during this crisis. Staff at LeadingAge’s national office are always here for you. Contact our team directly or email us at covid@leadingage.org. If you have questions about local and state issues, contact us and we’ll get right on it.

COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click hereto view the entire page.Click hereto view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. All business members are invited to share their COVID-19 resources by emailing the LeadingAge NC office. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted information.


In addition, LeadingAge national keeps theirCOVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.



 

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org






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COVID-19 Update April 9, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Thursday, April 16, 2020


April 9, 2020

 


COVID-19 Daily Update

 

COVID-19 Hits Skilled Nursing Facilities with a Vengeance
Yesterday brought news of several large COVID-19 outbreaks in skilled nursing facilities across the state. Orange County’s health department first reported an outbreak on April 2 involving two positive cases at a skilled nursing facility in Durham. Yesterday, the number at the facility had increased to at least 60 positive cases. Seven of those people have been hospitalized and two have died. In Moore County, more than 30 people at a nursing facility in Pinehurst have tested positive. DHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen said yesterday there are 18 ongoing outbreaks in skilled nursing facilities across North Carolina (the state defines an outbreak as two or more cases). Statewide, as of yesterday afternoon, there were 3,426 laboratory-confirmed cases and 53 deaths.

Cooper Issues New Executive Order Granting DHHS Secretary Broad Authorities
Recognizing the ongoing severity of the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Roy Cooper yesterday issued a new Executive Order granting DHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen broad authority to waive or modify a number of departmental enforcements. Click here for an FAQ detailing the specifics, including a special section on page two regarding fingerprinting.

List of Template Letters for Positive Cases
Our friends at LeadingAge California have a comprehensive set of positive case communication templates. You can find them on the LeadingAge California website (page down to the “Crisis Communication Tools” section) and include a COVID-19 Member Toolkit, Media 101 Primer, Symptoms and Ongoing Testing (Suspected Case), Positive COVID-19 Diagnosis in your Community(Staff or Resident), Community Notification Letter of Positive Case, Positive Case Letter to Friends and Family, Media Response to Loss of First Resident, Loss of First Resident to COVID-19, and Loss of First Resident Letter to Friends and Family.

Resources Available to Help Manage Stress and Anxiety

Is COVID-19 causing you stress or anxiety? You're not alone. Click here for a number of resources.

FEMA Disaster Relief Fund Information
Another potential source of assistance with COVID-19 expenses is a $45 billion infusion into the FEMA Disaster Relief Fund.Our friends at Ziegler provided us with information on the fund. These moneys will be distributed to states, localities, tribes and private nonprofits for expenses associated with COVID-19 response.FEMA will cover 75% of eligible costs, while you cover the other 25%. Funding is available for private nonprofitsregardless of size or number of employees;senior living, healthcare and housing organizations are eligible to apply.SeePNP Eligibility Listto clarify your eligibility. Click here for more information provided by Ziegler on details of the program.

LeadingAge North Carolina Weekly Call-in Change

Beginning next Monday, April 13, LeadingAge North Carolina’s weekly COVID-19 Call-In will switch to 2 pm. We heard from a number of participants that they would like an earlier start time so they could make the daily LeadingAge national calls.

3:30 pm LeadingAge National Daily Update Call Pauses
A reminder that LeadingAge national will NOT hold 3:30 calls today and Sunday. They WILL hold calls Friday, Saturday and every day until April 26.

CMS Update
Not much of consequence to report from LeadingAge’s CMS nursing home stakeholder call yesterday afternoon. The number one questions the national keeps hearing from members relate to the 3-day stay, extension of care past 100 days, MDS submissions, and PBJ submissions. Apparently, it is national’s understanding that FAQs on these issues are coming soon from CMS.

The Latest Rumor: CMS Plans to Approve CMP Grants for Communication Devices
We’ve heard through the grapevine that CMS officials plan to authorize the use of Civil Money Penalty funds to help nursing home residents stay in touch with loved ones. CMS has indicated the plan is to provide every nursing home with a $3,000 grant to purchase electronic devices so residents can remotely communicate with family and friends.It is estimated the grant would fund one device (e.g., IPad) for every seven residents. Assuming CMS actually goes forward with this plan, details should be released within a few days.

CMS Open Door Forum on Telehealth
CMS’s open door forum on telehealth yesterday covered the current flexibilities and noted that there will be more waivers coming based on the new flexibility provided by the CARES act. One area in which they emphasized they were reviewing the ability to be more flexible included physical, occupational, and speech therapy.

USDA relief for rural housing providers and residents
In anupdated statementissued on April 8, USDA-Rural Development implemented several new relief measures for rural housing providers and residents. Highlights include CARES Act eviction protection, increased voucher amounts, and forbearance options. LeadingAge national’s ongoing requests for rural housing support are available to view onlinehere.

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations

In an effort to help leaders inspire and motivate their teams...


In the book,Between the World and Me,Ta-Nehisi Coates writes, “I would not have you descend into your own dream. I would have you be a conscious citizen of this terrible and beautiful world.”

Check in question: In your opinion, what is the most terrible thing in our world right now? What is the most beautiful thing in our world right now? Why is it important, especially now, to be aware of these things, to live in the moment, and to not lose ourselves in dreams or fears?

Questions? Ask LeadingAge National, Your State Association, or Each Other
There are many ways to get help during this crisis. Staff at LeadingAge’s national office are always here for you. Contact our team directly or email us at covid@leadingage.org. If you have questions about local and state issues, contact us and we’ll get right on it.

COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click hereto view the entire page.Click hereto view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. All business members are invited to share their COVID-19 resources by emailing the LeadingAge NC office. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted information.


In addition, LeadingAge national keeps their COVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.

 

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org






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COVID-19 Update April 8, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Thursday, April 16, 2020


April 8, 2020

 

COVID-19 Daily Update


By the Numbers
As of 10:15 am Tuesday morning, the state of North Carolina had 3,221 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in 90 counties. 46 people have died in North Carolina due to COVID-19 and 354 are currently hospitalized. There are ongoing outbreaks (classified by the state as “two or more confirmed cases”) in nine skilled nursing facilities in North Carolina and three adult care facilities. Our sense is that the number of skilled nursing facilities with at least one positive case is much higher than the nine outbreaks listed.

Value First Releases PPE Survey Results

Value First just completed a national survey of member community personal protective equipment needs. Click here for a look at the results.

LeadingAge North Carolina Weekly Call-in Change
Beginning next Monday, April 13, our weekly COVID-19 Call-In will switch to 2 pm. We heard from a number of participants that they would like an earlier start time so they could make the daily LeadingAge national calls.

CMS Schedules Nursing Home Call - April 8th at 3:30 pm
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has scheduled a call on COVID-19 with Nursing Homes for tomorrow, Wednesday, April 8th at 3:30 PM CST. CMS leadership will provide updates on the agency’s latest guidance and we will be joined by leaders in the field interested in sharing best practices with their peers. The call will be recorded if you are unable to join. Conference lines are limited, so we highly encourage you to join via audio webcast, either on your computer or smartphone web browser. Attendee Dial-In: 833-614-0820 Conference ID: 6798274 The weblink can be found here.

New Calculators Available to Navigate the FFCRA and Cares Act
There are twonew calculators to help aging services providers know what help is available to them through the two Federal COVID-19 Bills that have been signed into law through April 1,2020, the Families First COVID Response Act (FFCRA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES). One tool is specific to providers that bill Medicare Part A (SBA and Part A Calculator) as there are certain advance payments and sequestration suspensions that apply to these providers. The other calculator looks at the Small Business Administration loan and forgiveness program (SBA Calculator). These tools are simply an estimate of the potential impact based on your inputs. The analysis itself does not evaluate eligibility. Please refer to the information and the links in theCOVID-19 Stimulus Bill Facility Impact Calculators Explainer Documentto determine your organization’s eligibility under the various programs.
A special thank you to our friends at LeadingAge Wisconsin for sharing these tools.

NCIOM and SCIMPH Issue COVID-19 Brief
The North Carolina Institute of Medicine and the South Carolina Institute of Medicine and Public Health have issued a COVID-19 Issue Brief. Click here to access a copy.

LeadingAge National Call-in Schedule Changes
We let you know yesterday that LeadingAge national will not be holding Daily Update Calls at 3:30 on this Thursday, April 9 and this Sunday, April 12, to recognize Passover and Easter, so members may spend time with those in their communities and with their families.There will be calls on Friday and Saturday. Today’s call will feature Liz Weingast, VP for Clinical Excellence at the New Jewish Home in New York City, talking about setting up a special care unit. In addition, there was a great deal of interest on yesterday’s call about the LeadingAge infection control tool and checklist. Here’s the link.

HHS Announces $34 billion in Accelerated/Advance Payments under Medicare

Yesterday, CMS AdministratorSeema Verma announced the firstweek’s spendingon Accelerated/Advance Payments under Medicare. In addition, Verma announced that very soon HHS will begin to award the first tranche of funds from the CARES $100 billion provider rescue fund. Politico reports that the first $30 billion will be awarded in the form of grants to providers and will primarily go to hospitals, based on how much they bill Medicare. Verma said CMS will follow up with another pot of money that will focus on nursing homes, pediatricians and children’s hospitals.HHS Secretary Alex Azar has also indicated some of the $100 billion will cover coronavirus expenses of uninsured individuals. Last week Verma assured Katie Sloan of LeadingAge national and Mark Parkinson with AHCA that Vice President Mike Pence is very concerned about nursing homes. More on this as we get more information.

HUD Releases New Update

Last night, HUD released a recorded update on COVID-19 issues…LeadingAge national hasthis articleabout it. One of the most significant statements was that HUD is looking to waive its usual procedures for getting funding out as it figures out how to move the new service coordinator funding out to housing providers. Here’s the direct quote: “The funding to replace tenant incomes will be triggered by tenant recertifications and should be a fairly quick and invisible process. For the portion of funding going to Service Coordinators, this is slightly more complicated because these dollars usually would come with a NOFA and a longer process. We’re working through the procedures to see what we can waive and what we can do to get that funding out to properties as quickly as we can.”

COVID-19 Heroes Fund Proposed

U.S. Senators Bob Casey, Jr. and Ron Wyden announced plans yesterday to support aCOVID-19 Heroes Fundto reward, retain and recruit essential frontline workers – “healthcare professionals, first responderspersonal care and home health workers…and other unsung heroes.” It would provide $25,000 premium pay to essential workers from the start of the public health emergency to December 31, 2020 and $15,000 as a recruitment incentive for new workers.The idea has not yet been introduced as legislation. The likely path to enactment would be to include it in the upcoming 4thstimulus bill.

Congressional Letter to CMS/CDC Seeks List of Nursing Homes with COVID-19 Cases
On April 2, Senators Casey and Wyden sent aletter to CDC/CMSseeking a list of nursing homes with people who have positive diagnoses of COVID-19 and an extended list of additional requests. Given the press of the coronavirus crisis and the fact that the COVID status of any community or nursing home changes hourly, it is possible that HHS may miss the April 16 deadline the Senators set for a response.

NextStep COVID-19 training offer extended to April 17
TheNextStep COVID-19 trainingfor anyone who is a paid or unpaid caregiver of older people in any setting will be available for free for LeadingAge member until April 17. The code at checkout is code for members remains the same: COVIDCERTNOW. This is not a formal certification program.

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In an effort to help leaders inspire and motivate their teams...
In the book,Being Mortal, Atul Gawande writes, “Human beings need loyalty. It does not necessarily produce happiness, and can even be painful, but we all require devotion to something more than ourselves for our lives to be endurable. Without it, we have only our desires to guide us, and they are fleeting, capricious, and insatiable.”
Check in question: Your loyalty to this organization is instrumental as we continue to work together to keep our residents safe, happy, and comfortable. We could not do this without you. But, during these trying times, what does your loyalty to this organization, to your co-workers, and to your residents mean to you?


Questions? Ask LeadingAge National, Your State Association, or Each Other
There are many ways to get help during this crisis. Staff at LeadingAge’s national office are always here for you. Contact our team directly or email us at covid@leadingage.org. If you have questions about local and state issues, contact us and we’ll get right on it.


COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click hereto view the entire page.Click hereto view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. All business members are invited to share their COVID-19 resources by emailing the LeadingAge NC office. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted information. In addition, LeadingAge national keeps their COVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.



 

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org






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COVID-19 Update April 7, 2020

Posted By Leslie Roseboro, Thursday, April 16, 2020


April 7, 2020

 

COVID-19 Daily Update


Yesterday’s Weekly COVID-19 Call-In Recap
Yesterday’s weekly LeadingAge NC COVID-19 Call-In featured great discussion, with 43 communities participating. During the call, we promised to share information about several items:

  1. Of the 13 communities responding to our question about the use of premium pay, 71% indicated they are providing premium pay to employees or considering it.
  2. Click here for a memo from Mark Payne at DHSR regarding temporary waivers on 10% increases (special thanks to Tiffany Roberson, Director of Health Systems and Informatics at The Presbyterian Homes, Inc. for sending this along).
  3. Jonathan Erickson from United Methodist Retirement Homes, Inc. talked about a link relating to masks. Here’s the contact information: Chase Johnson, Contempora Fabrics, 351 Contempora Drive, Lumberton, NC 28358, 910-738-7131, 910-733-5519.

Influential Modeling Tool Available Online
The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME)is an independent population health research center at UW Medicine, part of the University of Washington, that provides rigorous and comparable measurement of the world's most important health problems and evaluates the strategies used to address them. Their interactive modeling tool is in use worldwide in tracking the potential impacts of COVID-19.

NEW LeadingAge Resource to Help You Fill Jobs During this Crisis
LeadingAge is establishing partnerships with major national employers and associations to reach displaced workers from fields such as dining, retail, and hospitality.LeadingAge is directing out-of-work staff from other settings to their job board to find positions in your communities. Please post jobs of allkinds – for FREE - (including temporary positions and those that do not require certification) on the Leading Age Job Board atcareers.leadingage.org.

“What are the Benefits of Wearing a Face Mask?”
Click here for an informative look at the benefits of wearing a face mask.

From LeadingAge Centers
The LeadingAge LTSS Center @UMass Boston is sharing research studies and research-based articles focusing on how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting older adults and the people who care for them. Check out brief summaries of the latest data and analysis, including these recently posted articles:

EXTENDED OFFER: COVID-19 Learning Tool
NextStep is offering an informal online course designed to improve the safety of caregivers of all kinds working with COVID-19 patients in all settings. The COVID-Ready Caregiver program uses expert-developed online learning to help develop safety skills during the pandemic.
The program is NOT a formal certification—but it can be used to complement additional training. It can also be used by caregivers, housekeeping, and dietary teams, or any staff at independent living, adult day, PACE, and affordable housing, or other settings, as well as by family caregivers at home. Staff at LeadingAge members can access the course at no cost, and we just extended the offer so it's valid through April 17. Use code COVIDCERTNOW at check-out.

PPP Loan Program and Faith Based Organizations
Late Friday, the Small Business Administration issued guidance for the Paycheck Protection Program on affiliation of organizations as it relates to eligibility for the program and FAQs for faith based organizations. Here’s anarticle on the guidance, with links to it. LeadingAge members will be interested in the affiliation guidance related to ownership and management. The FAQs for faith based organizations indicates that faith based organizations are eligible to receive PPP and EIDL loans.

Revised USDA FAQs
Yesterday, the USDA updated its FAQs for multifamily affordable housing. The FAQ reminds owners to complete income recertifications as quickly and flexibly as possible, to not count the $1200 checks toward resident income, and that they can access their operating accounts to pay for COVID-19 expenses, among other items. The FAQ is behind the multi-family housing button onthis page.

CDC Posts Instructions to Sew a Face Mask
CDC put out guidance over the weekend about cloth face coverings, including an FAQ. They updated it last night to includeinstructions for sewing one. Questions about face masks are by far the most commonly asked questions on LeadingAge national's afternoon calls.

LeadingAge COVID-19 3:30 pm Call Today

LeadingAge National will hold their daily 3:30pm call. To register for the call, go tohttps://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1365743381042881035. Please note: you only have to register one time and will be automatically registered for the 3:30 call every day (7 days a week) through April 26.

LeadingAge COVID-19 Call Schedule Modified This Week

The team at LeadingAge has been inspired by the dedication of everyone. In the midst of a sacred week for many of us, LeadingAge national will pauseits live online updateson both Thursday, April 9,and Sunday, April 12,in recognition of Passover and Easter. Know that we will be working for you through the religious holidays this week, but will take these two days to allow members a chance to observe in their communities and with their loved ones.

Practical Tools for Staff Conversations
In an effort to help our leaders inspire and motivate their teams, here is today’s practical tool:

Brené Brown writes about three learnings that have been life-shifting for her.

  1. Anxiety is one of the most contagious emotions - that’s why it always takes down groups of people, not just individuals.
  2. Calm is also contagious, but it’s a daily intention and practice.
  3. We all have patterned ways of dealing with anxiety that are often set up in our first families. Understanding how and why can set us free.

Check in question: What calming practices have you found to be particularly helpful as you move through your day?

Questions? Ask LeadingAge National, Your State Association, or Each Other
There are many ways to get help during this crisis. Staff at LeadingAge’s national office are always here for you. Contact our team directly or email us at covid@leadingage.org. If you have questions about local and state issues, contact us and we’ll get right on it.

COVID-19 Information Pages
In addition to these daily email updates, LeadingAge North Carolina is updating our COVID-19 resource page every day with information from trusted sources, including from our business members.Click hereto view the entire page.Click hereto view the section of the page that highlights business member expertise in areas such as investments, financing, human resources, and rehabilitation as those topics relate to COVID-19. All business members are invited to share their COVID-19 resources by emailing the LeadingAge NC office. Thank you to everyone who has already submitted information.


In addition, LeadingAge national keeps theirCOVID-19 resource page updated. Be sure to bookmark these pages today.

 

Hats off to the staff at Sharon Towers...As there are no portable sinks to be had, they created this sink station right outside out their single entry screening station. Automatic everything so you don’t have to touch a thing, plus hot water!



 

LeadingAge North Carolina | 222 N. Person Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
919-571-8333 | info@leadingagenc.org | www.leadingagenc.org










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Calendar

7/16/2020
Webinar: Identifying and Preventing Functional Decline in the Growing Acuity of AL/IL Communities

7/21/2020
Teepa Snow: Using a Positive Approach to Dementia Care

7/28/2020
Webinar: Interventions to Support Mental Health (Depression, Anxiety, Grief) During a Pandemic

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