The following is the latest COVID-19 information from the federal government as 2:30 p.m. on Monday, December 14.
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
- CMS has updated its payment and HCPCS Level I CPT code structure with specific COVID-19 vaccine information. Among other things, it notes that providers should only bill the vaccine administration codes when they submit claims to Medicare and should not include vaccine product codes when the vaccines are free.
- CMS has updated its data on Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payments Program payments to providers. The data is both general, about different provider types, and specific for individual recipients.
- CMS has provided information about the ability of applicants for CLIA certification to perform COVID-19 tests before they have received their certification.
Provider Relief Fund
- The “Reporting Requirements and Auditing” section of the Provider Relief Fund web page has been updated with a link to a new overview of Provider Relief Fund allowable expenses. The purpose of this document is to clarify the intent and provide examples of allowable expenses for the use of Provider Relief Fund general and targeted distribution payments.
- HHS’s Provider Relief Fund FAQ has 13 updates marked “12/11/2020.” They can be found on pages 2 (two changes), 3, 11, 15, 16 (four changes), 17 (two changes), and 27 (two changes). Of particular interest to providers, the update on page 11 addresses sharing of Provider Relief Fund grants among related entities; the changes on pages 16 and 17 address allowable expenses and offsets of other revenue; and the change on page 27 addresses allowable costs for vaccine purchase and distribution.
CMS COVID-19 Stakeholder Calls
CMS hosts recurring stakeholder engagement sessions to share information about the agency’s response to COVID-19. These sessions are open to members of the health care community and are intended to provide updates, share best practices among peers, and offer participants an opportunity to ask questions of CMS and other subject matter experts.
COVID-19 Office Hours Call
Tuesday, December 22 at 5:00 (eastern)
Toll Free Dial In: 833-614-0820; Access Passcode: 3968359
Audio Webcast link: go here.
Conference lines are limited so CMS encourages interested parties to join via audio webcast.
To listen to the audio files and read the transcripts for past stakeholder calls, go here.
Department of Health and Human Services
- HHS has issued a statement on the FDA’s decision to issue emergency use authorization for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The FDA, part of HHS, issued its own statement as well.
- HHS’s Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response will sponsor a COVID-19 clinical rounds webinar on Tuesday, December 15 at 10:00 a.m. (eastern). Go here for further information and to register to participate.
- HHS’s Office of the Inspector General has updated its FAQ on the exercise of its enforcement authority to address the ability of FQHCs to conduct free COVID-19 testing or testing that is covered by government health care programs.
Food and Drug Administration
- The FDA has posted a fact sheet on the administration of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- The CDC has updated its information for providers about COVID-19 vaccinations. It also has updated its FAQ on vaccinations.
- The CDC has updated its FAQ on the clinical aspects of COVID-19.
National Institutes of Health
- The NIH has issued a news release reporting that baricitinib plus remdesivir shows promise for treating COVID-19.