A Quick Daily Dose of News from Your NCMS






 Enjoy your Tuesday

NCMS Morning Rounds.

  June 23, 2020

Learn More About Provider Relief Fund Payments

Last week, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) launched an application portal to distribute $15 billion in CARES Act Provider Relief Fund payments to eligible Medicaid and CHIP physicians and organizations. Read more about this allocation in this June 9 NCMS COVID-19 News Alert.

The payment will be at least 2 percent of reported gross revenue from patient care, and the final amount will be determined based on submitted data, including the number of Medicaid patients served. Eligible physicians and organizations have until July 20, 2020, to submit their application and report other necessary information, such as annual patient revenue data.

Today, June 23 and again on Thursday, June 25 at 2 p.m. HHS is hosting two webcasts for physicians and other health care professionals interested in learning more about the application process. Registration is required.

HHS also posted updated answers to questions about the Provider Relief Fund on its FAQ page. Here are the answers to two common questions:

• Q: Why is there a new Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal?
A: Portal will initially be used for new submissions from Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) providers seeking payments under the Provider Relief Fund starting Wednesday, June 10, 2020. At this time, this portal will serve as the point of entry for providers who have received Medicaid and CHIP payments in 2017, 2018, 2019 or 2020 and who have not already received any payments from the $50 billion Provider Relief Fund General Distribution.

• Q: What is the difference between the first Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal and the Enhanced Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal for the Medicaid Targeted Distribution?
A: The first Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal was used for providers who received a General Distribution payment prior to Friday, April 24th. These providers were required to submit financial information in order to receive approximately 2 percent of gross revenues derived from patient care. HHS has developed the new Enhanced Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal for providers who did not receive payments under the previous General Distribution, including those providers who bill Medicaid and CHIP (e.g., pediatricians, long-term care, and behavioral health providers.)

To review the complete list of FAQs visit the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund FAQs page.

Routine Vaccinations for School – An Update

With summer officially here, it’s hard to believe the new school year is just around the corner. The start of the school year is an important time to remind patients to stay on the recommended vaccination schedule. This year also brings a new vaccination requirement for the meningococcal conjugate vaccine.

Based on North Carolina immunization requirements, individuals who are turning 17 years old or entering 12th grade in 2020 now require a booster dose of the meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY). However, if a patient did not receive their first dose of the meningococcal conjugate vaccine until they were 16 or older, they are exempt from the booster dose at 17 years old.

As you discuss the MenACWY booster dose with your patients, you may also want to review the meningitis B vaccine, which adolescents and young adults ages 16-23 may receive, in order to fully protect your patients from bacterial meningitis. Meningitis B accounts for 70 percent of meningococcal cases among 16-23-year-olds, yet 83 percent of 17-year-olds have not received at least one dose of the MenB vaccine.

Medical and religious exemptions are still allowed for all mandatory vaccines in North Carolina. You can find more information about the latest immunization requirements in North Carolina here.

Here are the full vaccine requirements for those entering 12th grade.

What We Know Now About COVID-19

A lot has changed since NCMS Past President and current Durham Orange County Medical Society Board member Robert ‘Charlie’ Monteiro, MD, spoke on WCHL radio in March about COVID-19. In his latest radio interview, Dr. Monteiro, an internal medicine specialist, updates and educates the public on the changes over the last three months in scientific knowledge about and potential treatments for the coronavirus.

Listen to his 14-minute interview.

In the News

The Promise and the Peril of Virtual Health Care, The New Yorker, 6-22-20

Learning Opportunity

The American Public Health Association and the National Academy of Medicine offers the next in its webinar series is exploring the state of the science surrounding the current outbreak of COVID-19 in the United States and globally, with a focus on the emerging evidence on how to best mitigate its impact. Hear from trusted experts in such fields as public health, infectious disease, risk communication, and crisis standards of care in webinar #10: Learning to Treat COVID-19 — Clinical Trials and Developing Therapeutics during a Pandemic on Wednesday, June 24 from 5-6:30 p.m. Learn more and register.

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Phone: 919.833.3836 | Fax: 919.833.2023 | Email: ncms@ncmedsoc.org
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