The following is the latest COVID-19 information from federal regulators and others as of 4:30 p.m. on Monday, April 6.
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
- CMS has updated its COVID-19 FAQ for state Medicaid and CHIP programs. This FAQ covers a variety of subjects, including the use of Appendix K waivers, eligibility and enrollment flexibility, exceptions to timeliness standards, modification of eligibility verification policies, the use of telehealth, the suspension of premiums and other cost-sharing, and more.
- CMS has posted a video providing answers to commonly asked questions about the expanded Medicare telehealth services authorized under its nation-wide section 1135 waiver.
- CMS has published guidance for processing attestations from ambulatory surgical centers that are temporarily enrolling as hospitals during the COVID-19 emergency.
- See an updated list of the section 1135 waivers CMS has granted to help states and health care providers respond to the COVID-19 crisis.
Food and Drug Administration
- The FDA has posted an emergency use authorization (EUA) about circumstances under which selected imported, non-NIOSH-approved disposable filtering facepiece respirators may be used.
- The FDA has published its enforcement policy for clinical electronic thermometers during the COVID-19 emergency.
- The FDA has posted an FAQ on shortages of surgical masks and gowns. This FAQ addresses current shortages, the reuse of selected materials, the use of products that have not been approved by the FDA, and more.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
OSHA has provided interim guidance to its regional administrators and state plan designees regarding enforcement discretion to permit the extended use and reuse of respirators, and respirators that are beyond their manufacturers’ recommended shelf life during the COVID-19 emergency.
Department of Health and Human Services/Office of the Inspector General
- The OIG has issued a policy statement regarding the application of certain administrative enforcement authorities due to the COVID-19 crisis. This statement conveys that the OIG will not impose sanctions under anti-kickback laws related to actions by health care providers that fit under the HHS’s previous waiver of the physician self-referral provisions of the Stark law. The OIG also has launched a new FAQ on this policy statement to provide additional information.
- The OIG conducted a national survey of hospitals, asking them about the challenges and needs they faced. See a summary of the survey results here and the full report here.
The White House
During Friday’s coronavirus task force press briefing, national coronavirus response coordinator Deborah Birx, M.D. explained the priority in the distribution of the new COVID-19 test that yields results in 15 minutes.
American Medical Association
The American Medical Association has issued its own “guiding principles” for the protection of current medical students and medical students: those who are graduating early to help in the fight against COVID-19 and those who are being enlisted, while still in medical school, to participate in the direct care of COVID-19 and suspected COVID-19 patients.