DECEMBER 3, 2020
ABMS Draft Standards for Continuing Certification Call for Comments delayed until April 2021 due to COVID-19
ABMS Press Release
The American Board of Medical Specialties had been prepared to release the Draft Standards for Continuing Certification – Call for Comments in early December, however, the recent surge in new COVID-19 cases, which has placed additional burden on the already stressed health care system, has prompted ABMS to postpone the opening of the public comment period. READ MORE
2021 Medicare pay schedule eases physicians’ documentation burdens
AMA Wire
The final 2021 Medicare physician payment schedule includes a simpler, more flexible process for coding and documenting evaluation and management (E/M) office-visit services. But those positive changes, set to take effect in January, are accompanied by significant pay cuts for many physicians in specialties that provide relatively few office visits. | READ MORE
U.S. virus deaths top 3,100 in a single day for the first time
Associated Press
The U.S. recorded over 3,100 COVID-19 deaths in a single day, obliterating the record set last spring, while the number of Americans in the hospital with the virus has eclipsed 100,000 for the first time and new cases have begun topping 200,000 a day, according to figures released Thursday. | READ MORE
CDC panel says first COVID-19 vaccine doses should go to health workers, long-term care residents
The first doses of coronavirus vaccines should go to health care workers and residents of long-term care facilities, an expert panel advising the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday afternoon. | READ MORE
Moderna becomes second company to request emergency FDA authorization for COVID-19 vaccine
USA Today
Biotech company Moderna applied Monday for an emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration after receiving more good news about the safety and effectiveness of its candidate COVID-19 vaccine. | READ MORE
School mask policies: A study in contrasts
Georgia Health News
No other precaution short of closing schools – a drastic measure that can set children back academically and developmentally, and deprive them of free meals and health care – is likely to be as effective as a mask mandate, experts say. Allowing staff and students to forgo them contradicts guidance from the CDC on reopenings. | READ MORE
Thousands of doctors’ offices buckle under financial stress of COVID
Kaiser Health News
A survey by the Physicians Foundation estimated that 8% of all physician practices nationally – around 16,000 – have closed under the stress of the pandemic. | READ MORE
COVID-19 testing sites across metro Atlanta see long lines after holiday travels
Long lines formed throughout metro Atlanta as people rushed to get testing after they say they traveled for the holiday. | READ MORE
Hospitals say staffing crunch is biggest pandemic challenge
Georgia Health News
Georgia hospital CEOs told Gov. Brian Kemp on Wednesday that their biggest challenge amid the pandemic is finding enough staff to treat people stricken by COVID and also take care of other patients. | READ MORE
BP monitoring you can count on – list of validated devices grows
AMA Wire
Accurate measurement of BP – in the physician office and in patients’ homes – is essential for the diagnosis and management of hypertension. But which blood-pressure measurement devices have been validated to help deliver that accurate measurement? One list of such devices just got bigger. | READ MORE
Two-thirds of U.S. consumers are likely to switch health care providers if COVID-19 is poorly managed
Healthcare Finance
Nearly two-thirds of U.S. patients are likely to switch to a new health care provider if their current one doesn't meet their expectations for managing COVID-19 concerns, according to a new report from professional services company Accenture. | READ MORE
CDC shortens quarantine period to 10 days with no symptoms
NBC News
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is shortening the recommended quarantine period from 14 days after a person has been exposed to the coronavirus, offering two alternatives, the agency said Wednesday. | READ MORE
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