Visit this website daily for the latest information that NCHCFA has to share about COVID-19. As concerns arise with the emerging coronavirus, officially named COVID-19, we are working with our state partners, including the NC Division of Public Health to ensure nursing centers receive necessary guidance to prevent the spread of this disease. NCHCFA President & CEO Adam Sholar is also serving on the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force.
10/22/2020 – Grant Funds Through House Bill 1105 for Rapid Testing
- The North Carolina Health Care Facilities Association (NCHCFA) received grant funds through House Bill 1105. One portion of this money can only be used for the purchase of COVID-19 rapid tests. The other funds can be used for the purchase COVID-19 related supplies, equipment and PPE. In order to more accurately address the varying needs of nursing facilities, NCHCFA will reimburse facilities for their properly documented and supported expenses, up to a maximum allowed amount. Purchases on or after July 1, 2020 can be included. Click here for the NCHCFA Reimbursement Request Form and additional details.
10/15/2020 – New Rapid Testing Resource for Nursing Homes
- Curative Offers Testing Option to North Carolina Nursing Homes
- Curative is an innovative testing company, that has accomplished over 4.9 million tests across the United States since April. Curative currently conducts in excess of 75,000 tests per day, and has capacity to handle well over 100,000k tests.
- Curative has deep experience working with Nursing Homes, and has conducted a similar task on behalf of the Florida Skilled Nursing Homes/Assisted Care Facilities. Curative trained over 3,000 facilities via Zoom in 4 days and shipped over 300,000 test kits to these facilities. All tests were processed in under 48 hours from time of collection. A “Case Study” of the work with the Florida facilities can be found here. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.
10/08/2020 – NC Healthcare Preparedness Vaccination Planning
- CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook for Jurisdiction Operations
- This is the main operational guidance from CDC and contains information about CDC’s phased approach to COVID-19 vaccination as well as some hypothetical vaccination scenarios.
- Operation Warp Speed (OWS) Vaccine Distribution Graphic
- Describes the goals, tenets, and architecture of Operation Warp Speed
- From the Factory to the Frontlines
- A more detailed report about the OWS strategy for distributing COVID-19 vaccine
- Vaccination Planning Assumptions
- A detailed list of the planning assumptions CDC has provided to inform state and local planning
- Vaccination Program Action Items
- A checklist of action items to assist jurisdictions in early vaccination planning.
- Local Public Health COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs
- This is the first installment of this document that will be updated regularly by NC DHHS throughout the vaccine response.
09/28/2020 – NC DHHS Sec. Cohen Issued Secretarial Order No. 6 Updated Guidance for Visitation
09/28/2020 – NC DHHS Releases Updated Guidance for Visitation
09/11/2020 – CDC Guidance: Considerations for Interpreting Antigen Test Results in Nursing Homes
08/27/2020 – AHCA Public Relations Toolkit (New Updates)
08/25/2020 – Questions Received – NCHCFA Seeking Bids for Certain PPE for NC Nursing Facilities
08/20/2020 – NC PPE Classification System has been Updated – Moving all Respirators with Exhalation Valves to Tier II
08/17/2020 – NCHCFA Seeking Bids for Certain PPE for NC Nursing Facilities
NCHCFA has received a grant that will be used to purchase certain PPE for nursing facilities. NCHCFA is seeking bids on the purchase of significant amounts of gowns and/or N-95 masks. Please refer to the grant documents below for additional information:
If you have any additional questions please email email@example.com or call the Association office at (919) 782-3827.
07/21/2020 – AHCA Revised PPE Supplier List
- AHCA has developed a PPE supplier list that members may want to refer to when shopping for PPE here. The PPE vendors on the AHCA list have successfully served LTC providers and were recommended by providers.
06/18/2020 – Additional PPE Resources Now Available
05/04/2020 – NC Governor Signs Important Bills Passed by Legislature
04/27/2020 – NC Medicaid Special Bulletin COVID-19 #68
04/27/2020 – Waiver for Temporary Nurse Aide Services
04/11/2020 – Reporting COVID-19 to State Survey Agency
04/10/2020 – HHS Releases a Portion of the $100B COVID-19 Health Care Fund
04/09/2020 – CMS Accelerated Payment Program
04/03/2020 – CMS Issues COVID-19 Long Term Care Facility Guidance
04/01/2020 – CMS Updates PDPM ICD-10 Mappings for New COVID-19 Diagnosis Code
04/01/2020 – Change in Resource Request Process for Personal Protective Equipment in SNFs
On April 1st, the resource request process for EMS Systems changed and will no longer be submitted through your county emergency managers. This process change only relates to supplies for healthcare providers in the Hospital, EMS, and Long Term Care sectors. Their prioritization plan calls for fulfillment of scarce supplies in order to ensure urgent needs are met for those actively engaged in providing care for COVID-19 patients. This prioritization plan includes providing up to 7 days of inventory, when possible, for those that have only 96 hours of inventory remaining.
- Skilled Nursing Facility administrators submit all resource requests directly to the State Emergency Operations Center here
Requests will be vetted by ESF8 staff and the appropriate course of action will be taken based upon priority and available supply at the state’s Healthcare Preparedness Coalitions. No other processes have been revised at this time. As supplies continue to arrive in North Carolina, they will work towards fulfilling resource requests for all agencies. Healthcare providers are vital partners in our communities and will still require coordination and collaboration with Local Emergency Managers. It is not their intent to usurp the mutually beneficial relationships developed locally over the years but to help make the process more streamlined.
04/01/2020 – Memo on Eligibility Requirements for New SBA Loan Program Created by CARES Act
- As a way of addressing some of the questions about the SBA sections of the CARES Act, James Segroves with Reed Smith wrote a memo for members of the American Health Care Association (AHCA). You can read this memo by clicking here.
04/01/2020 – Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response – U.S. DHHS
03/31/2020 – Palmetto GBA Revised Request for Accelerated/Advance Payment Form
03/30/2020 – Enhanced Medicaid Rates
In March, Medicaid increased nursing facility rates by 5% in recognition of the cost increases related to COVID-19. The enhanced rates have been posted here.
The March rate file also includes the enhanced April rates. NCTracks should have these rates as well. If providers bill at the higher rates, they should be paid at these rates in the next checkwrite.
03/29/2020 – Guidance – Testing for Healthcare Workers & Residents/Patients in Long Term Care Settings
Local Industries Shifting Manufacturing to Assist with the PPE Shortage in North Carolina
NCHCFA continues to work with county emergency management officials to get much needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to our members. In the interim, as we are made aware of any additional PPE availability that could benefit you, we will let you know.
We are exploring ways hospitals, SNFs, and other healthcare providers may be able to bulk order in various areas of the state, and more on that concept should be available soon. The NC Hospital Association (NCHA) has also made available to our members their resource list, which can be found here.
Several reputable sources have also informed NCHCFA of local industries that have/are shifting manufacturing to assist with the PPE shortage in our state. IMPORTANT NOTE – NCHCFA in NO WAY recommends, endorses, or approves specifications of ANY PPE and/or manufacturers.
AHCA has developed a PPE supplier list that members may want to refer to when shopping for PPE here. The PPE vendors on the AHCA list have successfully served LTC providers and were recommended by providers.
Click here to see companies that are now manufacturing PPE to help those in the healthcare community.
If you are aware of any additional manufacturers that could assist our membership with PPE needs, please email Eric Kivisto at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NCHCFA Email Communications
- October 22, 2020 – Updates | NCHCFA COVID-19 Grant Funds
- October 14, 2020 – Updates | NC DHHS Updated Guidance – Reporting Antigen Tests Results
- October 9, 2020 – Updates | Additional Details from AHRQ ECHO National Nursing Home COVID Action Network
- October 9, 2020 – Updates | AHRQ ECHO National Nursing Home COVID Action Network
- October 8, 2020 – Updates | Resumption of Baseline TB Testing
- October 8, 2020 – Updates | NC Healthcare Preparedness Vaccination Planning
- October 6, 2020 – Updates | Abbott Announces Training Webinars October 7 & 9 and Reminder to Apply for Provider Relief Fund Resources
- Click here for previous email communications
AHCA/NCAL Email Communications
- October 22, 2020 – Updates | Updated Reporting Requirements to the Provider Relief Fund
- October 22, 2020 – Updates | Weighing Pharmacy Options for the CDC Vaccine Distribution Program
- October 21, 2020 – Updates | PPE Suppliers
- October 20, 2020 – Updates | Sign Up Now for the CDC Vaccine LTC Distribution Program
- October 16, 2020 – Updates | White House Announces Vaccination Distribution Program for LTC Residents
- October 16, 2020 – Updates | Helping Residents Vote in 2020
- October 12, 2020 – Updates | New OSHA Guidance for COVID-19 and Resources
- October 9, 2020 – Updates | CMS Releases Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payment Guidance
- October 7, 2020 – Updates | HHS Updates Provider Relief Fund FAQs
- October 5, 2020 – Updates | Important Webinar Updates
- October 2, 2020 – Updates | Ask the Experts: FFCRA Webinar Recording and Follow-up Webinar
- October 2, 2020 – Updates | HHS Announces New Opportunity to Apply for Provider Relief Fund Resources
- Click here for previous email communications
Visit AHCA/NCAL for the most up to date information regarding COVID-19.
Email any additional questions to AHCA/NCAL staff at COVID19@ahca.org.
Section 1135 Waiver Flexibilities – North Carolina Coronavirus Disease
Ancillary Services Guidance for Feeding Assistance
The document here contains necessary requirements and guidance for allowing non-nursing staff such as housekeepers or business office personnel to provide feeding assistance to persons who DO NOT have any difficulty eating, drinking, or swallowing. The document was approved by both Cindy Deporter, State Survey Director and Becky Wertz, Section Chief, Licensure and Certification Section, NCDHSR.
We know many of our members are worried about ensuring their children have safe care while you and your teams continue providing critical services during this unprecedented crisis. To assist with this challenge, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the NC Department of Public Instruction are working with their networks of partners across the state to provide child care options to children of essential workers, which includes first responders, hospital staff, front-line healthcare providers, nursing and adult group home staff, child care program staff, food service staff and others working to keep our communities safe and healthy as we respond to COVID-19.
Parents and families with urgent childcare needs may call 1-888-600-1685 to find high-quality, safe childcare for infants through children age 12. We encourage you to share the hotline number and these handouts:
Governor’s Visitation Recommendations
- Governor’s Recommendations March 13, 2020
- NCHCFA Template Door Sign Restricting Visitors
- NCHCFA Visitor Log Template
NC DHHS Coronavirus Resources
- Webcast Recording Friday, March 13, at 11:00 am for NCHCFA Members
- NCHCFA Represents SNFs at Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force Meeting, March 12
- Webcast Recording Friday, March 6, at 10:30 am for NCHCFA Members
Update From NCTracks
- Qualified Medicare Beneficiary (QMB) Crossover Claims Reprocessing Notice
- New Special Medicaid Bulletin Regarding COVID-19 Available
- CMS COVID-19 Partner Toolkit
- QSO-20-14-NH – March 13, 2020
- QSO-20-14-NH – March 9, 2020
- CMS Releases Medicare Fee-For-Service and Medicare Advantage Plan Guidance March 11, 2020
NCHCFA Crisis Communication:
Given the public focus on Coronavirus and COVID-19, we recognize that many of the staff and residents in member facilities and their families are particularly focused on these developments. While we know your focus is rightly on the provision of needed health care services, and protecting your staff and residents, we want to aid in preparing from a communications perspective for the possibility of an occurrence of COVID-19 in your facility. The following information here has been provided to the Association by a crisis communications expert who is available to assist our members if necessary.
NC Division of Public Health
Guidance for Management of Scarce Resources
- NC Healthcare Supply Conservation Considerations
- Healthcare Coalition Partners – Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Resource Monitoring and Request Algorithm
- Strategies for Scarce Resource Situations
Guidance for both healthcare workers and facility owners/operators
- General Guidance
- Guidance for Healthcare Professionals and Local Health Departments
- Guidance for Non-Healthcare Settings
If members have specific questions about COVID-19 or need assistance with risk assessment for a resident or staff member after talking to your local health department, the Communicable Disease Branch of the Epidemiology Section of the N.C. Division of Public Health, Department of Health & Human Services, has a 24-hour call line. That number is: (919) 733-3419. More information about the Branch is available here.