COVID-19 Resources

This page is intended to connect Iowa physicians and clinic administrators to the most up-to-date resources as our state responds to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic. If you are unable to locate necessary information or have information or have further questions, please contact Kady Reese or Dennis Tibben with IMS.

Recent Updates

Governor Extends Disaster Proclamation, Continues Indoor Public Mask Order, Relaxes Elective Procedure Restrictions – 12/9/2020

The governor signed the latest Proclamation of Disaster Emergency continuing much of the public health mitigations provisions from the November 18 proclamation with limited amendments through December 16. Two priority provisions of the current proclamation are:

  • Continuance of the order for use of face masks for all Iowans aged two years and above while in indoor public spaces;
  • Allowance of non-urgent and elective procedures up to 75% of similar bed usage in September, an increase from 50% in the November 18 proclamation, assuming all other criteria for elective procedures are met.

CDC Product Information Guide for COVID-19 Vaccines and Associated Products - 12/4/2020

CDC released the Product Information Guide for COVID-19 Vaccines and Associated Products today with specifications and information for COVID-19 vaccine and associated products. It provides key product information including product package dimensions, weight, minimum order quantities, distribution method, storage, information and more.

Provider Alert: Changes in Prior Authorization Requirements for Post-Acute Stays due to the Increase in COVID Hospitalizations - 11/19/20

Iowa Total Care (ITC) is following the State’s decision to waive prior authorizations for inpatient discharges to the post-acute settings. This went into effect on November 17, 2020 and will stay in effect until further notice.

Learn More

Non-Urgent & Elective Medical Procedures - 11/16/2020

The most recent State Public Health Declaration adopts the following new criteria for the continuation of non-urgent or elective medical procedures:

  • Patients Must Receive a Negative COVID-19 Test Within 72 hours of the Procedure;
  • Facilities Must Reserve 10% of ICU and 10% of Medical/Surgical Beds for the Treatment of Patients with COVID-19;
  • The Total Number of Medical/Surgical Beds and Observation Beds used for Non-Urgent or Elective Surgeries or Procedures Must be No More Than 50% of Those Used on Average During the Month of September;
  • Facilities Must Continue to Accept and Treat COVID-19 Patients, and Must Not Transfer Patients to Create Capacity for Non-Urgent or Elective Procedures.

Governor Extends Emergency Declaration, Implements Partial Mask Order 11/11/2020

Governor Reynolds has signed a new Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration, extending previous COVID-19 mitigation measures until November 30. In addition, the new measure includes Iowa’s first statewide public facemask orders requiring most individuals over the age of two to wear a cloth face covering when in public. The order requires the use of masks for indoor groups of 25 or more and outdoor groups of 100 or more. IMS has updated the summary document on the Public Health Disaster Emergency Declarations section of this page to outline the pertinent components that were extended in the latest emergency declaration, and a link to the IDPH summary document outlining the new mitigations that took effect this week. Public gathering and mask use requirements outlined in the IDPH one pager.

CMS Expands Telehealth Adoption Across Country - 10/14/2020

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) expanded the list of telehealth services that Medicare Fee-For-Service will pay for during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency (PHE). CMS is also providing additional support to state Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) agencies in their efforts to expand access to telehealth. The actions reinforce President Trump’s Executive Order on Improving Rural Health and Telehealth Access to improve the health of all Americans by increasing access to better care.

Full Press Release

CMS Announces New Repayment Terms for Medicare Loans Made to Providers During COVID-19

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced amended terms for payments issued under the Accelerated and Advance Payment (AAP) Program as required by recent action by President Trump and Congress.  This Medicare loan program allows CMS to make advance payments to providers and are typically used in emergency situations.  Under the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and Other Extensions Act repayment will now begin one year from the issuance date of each provider or supplier’s accelerated or advance payment.

Full Press Release

HHS to Open New Round of Provider Relief Funding - 10/1/2020

HHS has announced an additional $20 billion in provider relief funding available to the following groups:

· Providers who previously received, rejected, or accepted a General Distribution Provider Relief Fund payment. Providers that have already received payments of approximately 2% of annual revenue from patient care may submit more information to become eligible for an additional payment.

· Behavioral Health providers, including those that previously received funding and new providers.

· Healthcare providers that began practicing January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020. This includes Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, and behavioral health providers.

Applications for this latest round of funding opens on Monday, October 5.

Full Press Release

IDPH Quarantine Recommendation Changes - 9/30/2020

Yesterday the Iowa Department of Public Health released revised quarantine recommendations for people who have been exposed to a positive case of COVID-19 in community-based settings. These changes are based upon the use of masks or face coverings by both the person testing positive for COVID-19 and their close contacts (fewer than six feet apart for 15 minutes). The guidance places emphasis on correct and consistent wearing of face coverings in applying these recommendations.

As this guidance differs from the current quarantining guidance from the CDC and national expertise, IMS continues to encourage physicians to engage with their local public health partners and school districts as schools, businesses, and communities work to navigate and make decisions.

One thing is consistent across all guidances – the importance of wearing face coverings and following public health precautions to protect yourself and others from COVID-19:

  • Wear a face covering (covering both nose and mouth whenever in public spaces).
  • Maintain social distancing of at least six feet whenever possible.
  • Wash your hands frequently and use hand sanitizer.
  • Stay home whenever you feel ill.

New Quarantine Recommendations Infographic

Preparing for a COVID-19 Vaccine: IDPH Planning & Distribution Workgroup - 9/24/2020

The Iowa Department of Public Health has convened a stakeholder workgroup, comprised of IMS and other leaders within the provider and public health community, to assist with planning and distribution of an anticipated COVID-19 vaccine. IMS has prepared this meeting summary to quickly convey the latest updates and will continue to provide these regular updates as they become available. Please note, this information is rapidly evolving and may change. Practices are encouraged to contact IMS with any questions about this information.

CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Program Interim Playbook Released - 9/16/20

CDC has released the interim playbook outlining planning and operations guidance for state and local public health jurisdictions, including the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), in preparation for the approval and allocation of COVID-19 vaccines. The playbook includes guidance related to the phased approach for vaccine distribution, determination of critical populations, and provider recruitment and engagement in vaccine administration.

AMA Announces New CPT Codes as COVID-19 Advancements Expand - 9/8/2020

The American Medical Association (AMA) published an update to the Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) code set that includes the following two code additions for reporting medical services sparked by the public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • CPT code 99072: additional supplies and clinical staff time required to mitigate transmission of respiratory infectious disease while providing evaluation, treatment, or procedural services during a public health emergency, as defined by law.
  • CPT code 86413: created for reporting quantitative antibody detection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

Learn More about CPT codes 99072 & 86413 here

Deadline Extended for Providers to Apply for Medicaid CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Distribution

Who is eligible to apply? - Providers who bill Medicare, Medicaid, Medicaid managed care, or CHIP, Dental providers who accept insurance, as well as bill patients directly, and First-time or previous applicants may apply as long as they haven’t already received 2% of their patient revenue. Follow this 6-step application process to apply:

State Extends Public Health Emergency Declaration - 8/24/2020

The governor has issued another 30-day extension to the Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration. This updated declaration runs through midnight on September 20 and extends, in the same form as the previous declaration, all of the areas of interest to medicine.

IDPH Releases Initial COVID-19 Vaccine Plan - 8/18/2020

IDPH has released the initial plan for administration of an anticipated COVID-19 vaccine, along with steps providers can take to prepare, starting with registration for the IRIS system.

New SARS-CoV-2 PCR Diagnostic Testing Considerations - 8/18/2020

The American Medical Association staff has generated the below document for physicians concerning diagnostic testing for SARS-CoV-2. The document provides considerations for responsible use of limited testing resources that physicians should consider when seeking polymerase chain reaction (PCR) diagnostic testing. For example, physicians should be good stewards of limited resources by prioritizing PCR diagnostic testing services for those with a medical need, such as those with COVID-19 symptoms, those with a known exposure to someone with COVID-19, those in need of pre-procedure testing, and health care workers.

HHS Provider Relief Fund Accepting Additional Applicants - 8/11/2020

On July 31, 2020, HHS announced that certain Medicare providers would be given another opportunity to receive additional Provider Relief Fund payments. Starting August 10th, these eligible providers may now submit their application  for possible funds by August 28, 2020. This deadline aligns with the extended deadline for other eligible Phase 2 providers, such as Medicaid, Medicaid managed care, CHIP, and dental providers. For more information, please visit the HHS website.

Proposed CY 21 Physician Fee Schedule Extends COVID-19 Telehealth Policies

CMS has published the proposed Calendar Year 2021 Physician Fee Schedule, which includes both permanent and temporary extensions of many telehealth coverage expansions and policy flexibilities that were initially implemented in response to COVID-19.

Confirmation of CMS Coverage for COVID Counseling

CMS has confirmed provider reimbursement coverage for patient counseling around the importance of self-isolation for patients who are being tested for COVID-19, regardless of where the test is administered. CMS will use existing evaluation and management (E/M) payment codes to reimburse providers who are eligible to bill CMS for counseling services. CMS has also created a Counseling Check List to assist providers in counseling and providing resources to patients.

UnitedHealthcare Extends COVID-19 Flexibilities Through October 22 - 7/29/2020

UnitedHealthcare recognizes that the persistence of COVID-19 cases across the country continues to have an impact on the healthcare system – both for COVID-19-related care as well as for regular preventive visits. To provide ongoing support to members and providers, UnitedHealthcare is extending many of the COVID-19 temporary program, process and coverage changes through Oct. 22, 2020. Full details, including applicable benefit plans and service information, can be found online.

IMS: Iowa's State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration UPDATE - 7/24/2020

Renewal of a Public Health Emergency

USA Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar extended the current COVID-19 public health emergency, for an additional 90 days. This was originally set to expire on July 25. 

AMA Releases New Physician Wellness Resources - 7/8/2020

7/7/2020 - Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) released a new Fact Sheet for Medicaid and CHIP Providers that is now available on the Provider Relief Fund website. Applications are due July 20, 2020

Gov. Reynolds signs new proclamation continuing the State Public Health Emergency Declaration - 6/25/2020

HHS Provider Relief Fund Update - 6/19/2020

Last week, HHS launched an application portal to distribute $15 billion in CARES Act Provider Relief Fund payments to eligible Medicaid and CHIP physicians and organizations. 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.

Wellmark to Continue Paying Health Care Providers the Same for Virtual Visits Until Feb. 1 2021 - 6/17/2020

Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield announced it has agreed to extend the same reimbursement fee to Iowa providers for virtual visits as is paid for in-person visits until Feb.1, 2021. This applies to all appropriate medical and behavioral health virtual visits with any Wellmark in-network provider in Iowa.

UnitedHealthcare Extends COVID-19 Temporary Telehealth Expansion and Cost Share Waivers - 6/17/2020

UnitedHealthcare is temporarily expanding the dates through which they are waiving the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) originating site requirements for Medicare Advantage, Medicaid and Individual and fully insured Group Market health plan members.

COVID-19 Liability Protections - 6/12/2020 

The following COVID-19 Liability Protections have passed the legislature  and currently await the governor’s signature:

IMS Elective Procedures & Public Health Declaration Updates - 6/10/2020

HHS Announces Enhanced Provider Portal, Relief Fund Payments for Safety Net Hospitals, Medicaid & CHIP Providers - 6/9/2020

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), has announced additional distributions from the Provider Relief Fund to eligible Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) providers that participate in state Medicaid and CHIP programs. HHS expects to distribute approximately $15 billion to eligible providers that participate in state Medicaid and CHIP programs and have not received a payment from the Provider Relief Fund General Distribution. HHS is also announcing the distribution of $10 billion in Provider Relief Funds to safety net hospitals that serve our most vulnerable citizens. The safety net distribution will occur this week.

Full Press Release

HHS Announces New Laboratory Data Reporting Guidance for COVID-19 Testing - 6/8/2020

Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced new Guidance that specifies what additional data must be reported to HHS by laboratories along with Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) test results. The Guidance standardizes reporting to ensure that public health officials have access to comprehensive and nearly real-time data to inform decision making in their response to COVID-19. As the country begins to reopen, access to clear and accurate data is essential to communities and leadership for making decisions critical to a phased reopening.

Full Press Release

UnitedHealthcare Continues Phasing Out COVID-19 Flexibilities – 6/1/2020

UHC has published a schedule of when COVID-19 policy flexibilities will phase out, starting today.

June 1 – All prior authorization requirements and site of service reviews resume.

June 24 – Telehealth flexibilities extended through this date for Individual and fully-insured Group Market plans.

June 30 – Claims with a date of service on or after Jan. 1, 2020 will not be denied for timely filing if submitted by

AMA Publishes Updated Clinic Reopening Guide – 5/28/2020

The AMA has published updated clinic reopening guide, which includes a reopening checklist, a template pre-appointment patient screening script and information for practices considering implementing a tele-triage program.

CDC Issues COVID-19 Serology Testing Guidelines – 5/27/2020

The CDC has issued interim guidelines on the use of serological testing to determine proactive immunity and infectiousness among COVID-19 patients.

State Extends Emergency Declaration – 5/26/2020

Governor Reynolds has issued a new Public Health Disaster emergency Declaration, extending many of the provisions of interest to the medical community until June 25. In doing so, she modified slightly the partial ban on elective procedures, lowering the threshold for ICU beds hospitals must reserve for potential COVID-19 patients from 30% to 20% of ICU bed capacity.

CDC Releases Detailed Reopening Guidance – 5/21/2020

The CDC has released its long-form state reopening guidance, which includes recommendations on disease surveillance, healthcare system capacity, infection control and contact tracing, testing usage, surveillance assessment and hospital gating, and setting-specific guidance.

Medicaid Issues Updated COVID-19 Testing & Lab Coding Guidance – 5/20/2020

IME has published a new Informational Letter to update coding guidance for COVID-19 testing and lab services.

Medicare Updates COVID-19 Testing Payment Guidance – 5/19/2020

CMS has issued updated guidance to Medicare Administrative Contractors for the payment rates to assign to new COVID-19 testing codes.

AHRQ COVID-19 Telehealth White Paper 
The AHRQ Evidence-based Practice Center has published a new white paper using existing research to contextualize the rapid expansion of telehealth services during the COVID-19 pandemic and help inform clinical decision making.
AHRQ COVID-19 Telehealth White Paper

New IMS Patient & Family COVID-19 Communication Resource

The IMS Patient and Family Advisory Committee has assembled some basic communication resources to assist physicians with translating the potentially complex conversations around COVID-19 into more person-centered and approachable discussions.

Medicare Telehealth Coverage & Payment FAQ Video
CMS has released an updated FAQ video to outline some of the most common questions about Medicare coverage and payment under the COVID-19 public health disaster declarations.
·  CMS: Medicare Telehealth & Payment FAQ Video

Additional Sources of PPE 
To aid practices in locating PPE to supplement the limited supply available via traditional supply lines, IMS has assembled a list of PPE manufacturers and distributors. IMS is providing this information as an informational resource. We cannot guarantee that these companies will consistently continue to accept orders or avoid shipment delays as demand increases. The full listing of manufacturers and distributors with the categories of PPE the provide, is available on the right-hand side of this page.

UHC Ending Most Medicare Advantage Coverage for Audio-Only Telehealth 
UnitedHealthcare (UHC) has announced that they will being phasing out the audio-only telehealth flexibilities that were implemented as part of their initial pandemic response efforts. Beginning May 11, they will require that telehealth visits with Medicare Advantage patients, including DSNP patients, be performed utilizing an interactive audio-video platform, unless otherwise indicated as a covered audio-only visit in the May 1, 2020, CMS telehealth announcement. UHC coverage for audio-only telehealth visits with individual and group plans is scheduled to continue until June 18.
·  UHC May 8 COVID-19 Notice
·  CMS May 1 Telehealth Announcement

HHS Extends CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Attestation Deadline 
HHS has extended the deadline for providers to attest to receipt of funds under the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund and accept the program’s terms and conditions. Previously set at 30 days from the date of receiving funds, providers now have 45 days from this date to complete their attestation.
·  CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Terms and Conditions
·  CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Informational Page

Free Physician Peer Support Line
Physicians working on the front lines of COVID-19 response efforts can now access a free, confidential national support line. This resource line, staffed by volunteer psychiatrists from across the country, is available daily from 8:00 am – 3:00 am EST.
·  Physician Support Line

Strategies for ASC Operating Room Management
Physicians at the University of Iowa are among the authors of a new article that will be published in the Journal of Clinical Anesthesia examining strategies for daily management of operating rooms in ambulatory surgical centers following the acute phase of the COIVD-19 pandemic.
·  JCA: Strategies for ASC Operating Room Management

CMS Announces Additional Practice Flexibilities

CMS has announced an additional round of COVID-19 blanket waivers, including payment parity for audio-only telehealth visits and additional flexibility for telehealth services under the Medicare program, as well as flexibility for medical staff privileging and the scope of services that may be provided at ambulatory surgical centers.
CMS: Blanket Waivers for Health Care Providers

New Resource for Evaluating Elective Procedures

IMS continues to field inquiries from clinics working to understand whether or not a specific procedure is subject to the overlapping state orders regarding elective procedures. To assist with this, we have developed an informational flowchart to outline the various decision points at which an individual procedure may be subject to the state restrictions which now extend until May 15. Practices are strongly encouraged to consult their legal counsel and medical liability carrier as they evaluate resumption of suspended services.
IMS COVID-19 Elective Procedures Flowchart

Registration Open for WPS Medicare Telehealth Webinar
Registration is now open for a new telehealth webinar that IMS and the fellow J-5 Region state medical societies will be hosting on May 11 from 10:00 – 11:30 am. This webinar, featuring experts from WPS Medicare, will address the recent Medicare telehealth billing and policy changes.
·  Register to Attend

CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Application Assistance 
The AMA has developed a guide to help practices navigate the application process to access the $100 billion CARES Act Provider Relief Fund. HHS has also released a new fact sheet related to the second round of provider payments through this new program. As part of the provider application process, physicians are required to submit their revenue information via the new Provider Payment Portal so it can be verified and payment issued.
·  AMA: CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Application Guide
·  AMA: Guidance for HHS General Allocation Fund Portal 
·  HHS Fact Sheet: Provider Relief Fund General Distribution 2 
·  HHS: CARES Provider Relief Fund Payment Portal

IMS Elective Procedures Checklist 
To assist practices in determining when to resume elective surgeries and nonurgent medical procedures, IMS has assembled a brief checklist of suggested criteria. Practices are reminded to consult their legal counsel and medical liability carriers as part of this process.
·   IMS Elective Procedures Checklist

State Issued Updated PPE Shortage Order 
IDPH has issued an updated PPE Shortage Order. This order, which replaces the April 9 PPE Shortage Order, integrates the governor’s April 24th emergency declaration to allow for the resumption of elective and nonessential medical procedures under certain circumstances. In doing so, the order also extends the blanket liability protections to any providers who resume elective procedures in accordance with the governor’s declaration.
IDPH: Updated PPE Shortage Order

Governor Partially Lifts Ban on Elective Surgeries & Non-Essential Procedures 
The governor has issued a new emergency declaration partially lifting the ban on elective surgeries and non-essential medical procedures, effective at 5:00 am on Monday, April 27. Practices are strongly encouraged to consult their legal counsel and medical liability carrier prior to resuming elective and non-essential services.
·  4/24 State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration
·  IMS Summary: Elective Surgeries & Nonessential Medical Procedures
·  COPIC: Sample Special Consent for Elective Surgery or Procedure During COVID-19

HHS to Release Next Round of Provider Relief Funds 
HHS has outlined the process by which it will begin releasing an additional $20 billion in direct provider relief funds, including funds to practices with a low Medicare volume, starting on April 24. Allocation of these funds will be based upon total 2018 net patient revenue and may require submission of an updated cost report for practices that do not already have one on file with CMS.
·  CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Informational Page

Initial Guidance for Resuming Routine Procedures 
While the statewide ban on elective surgeries and non-urgent medical procedures remains in effect until at least April 30, several national groups have begun to issue guidance for how practices can begin to prepare for the resumption of routine medical procedures and elective surgeries. This information may be helpful as your practice prepares to resume offering these services after the statewide ban is lifted.
·  CMS: Recommendations for Resuming Non-Emergent Healthcare
·  ACS: Guidance for Local Resumption of Elective Surgery 
Joint Statement on Roadmap for Resuming Elective Surgery

UI Physicians Participating in COVID-19 Provider Exposure Study
Physicians at the University of Iowa are engaged in a National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network (PCORnet) study to develop a healthcare worker registry to study worker exposure and experience related to COVID-19. 
· HERO Registry & Study Overview

CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Attestation & Payment Inquiries

HHS partnered with UnitedHealth Group (UHG) to deliver the CARES Act Provider Relief Fund payments. Physicians with inquiries about the status of their payments should contact UHG Provider Relations. Upon receiving funds, providers have 30 days from the date of payment to complete the payment attestation and agree to the terms and conditions. Practices that do not already have direct deposit through CMS or UHG’s Optum Pay, will receive a paper check unless they call UHG to set up direct deposit.
·  UHG Provider Relations: (866) 569-3522
·  CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Payment Attestation Portal
CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Terms & Conditions

Medicaid Announces Prior Auth & Claims Filing Extensions 
April 16, 2020
IME has announced that it is implementing a 90-day extension for all delayed services with a prior authorization approval that is scheduled to expire in March, April or May. It is also implementing a 90-day extension to the timely filing deadline for new claims with a date of service on or after April 1.
  IME Informational Letter No. 2129

FCC Accepting Applications for Telehealth Support Program
The federal CARES Act provided $200 million for the creation of a COVID-19 Telehealth Program to support qualifying providers’ telecommunications, information services, and device expenses related to the provision of telehealth services. Applications for this rolling funding opportunity are now being accepted.
  FCC COVID-19 Telehealth Program
·  Recorded Webinar on Application Process
·  FCC COVID-19 Telehealth Program FAQs

APHA/NAM COVID-19 Webinars
The American Public Health Association (APHA) and the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) have developed a series of free webinars outlining components of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  The Science of Social Distancing, Part 1
·  The Science of Social Distancing, Part 2
·  Emerging Evidence on Spread and Treatment
·  Crisis Standards of Care During COVID-19

CDC Releases Resources in Languages Other Than English
CDC in Espanol COVID-19 Homepage
·  COVID-19 Resources in Languages Other than English
·  COVID-19 Print Resources in Languages Other Than English

State Launches New COVID-19 Website 
COVID-19 in Iowa Website

AMA Updated Coding & Prior Authorization Guidance
COVID-19 Prior Authorization Guidance
·  COVID-19 Special Coding Guidance (Updated 4/3/2020)

IPS COVID-19 Resources
The Iowa Psychiatric Society has a number of COVID-19, including several physician wellness resources, available on its website.
IPS COVID-19 Resources

DEA Grants Controlled Substance Site Flexibility
The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has issued new guidance to allow hospitals and clinics to utilize their existing DEA registrations to receive and handle controlled substances at alternate satellite sites established to help respond the COVID-19 pandemic.
DEA Controlled Substance Site Flexibility 

HHS Releases Details on CARES Act Provider Relief Fund 
CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Information Page
·  CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Fact Sheet
·  CARES Act Provider Relief Fund Initial Distribution by State

IDPH Issues PPE Shortage Order
PPE Shortage Order 

CDC Issues Counterfeit PPE Guidance 
In response to the increase in counterfeit PPE, which may not be capable of providing appropriate respiratory protection, the CDC has issued updated guidance for how to identify NIOSH-approved respirators.
CDC Counterfeit PPE Guidance

CDC Releases Updated Interim COVID-19 Infection Prevention & Control Recommendations 
·  Updated Interim COVID-19 Infection Prevention & Control Recommendations

LifeServe Blood Center Issues Call for COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma 

LifeServe is looking to collect COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma (CCP) from patients who have had a confirmed SARS-CoV-19 diagnosis and subsequent resolution of symptoms. They have issued CCP donor guidance.
CCP Donor Guidance 
·   Donate COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Sign

CMS Issues Updated Guidance on Elective Surgeries & Nonemergent Medical Services 

·  CDC Guidance: Elective Surgeries & Nonemergent Medical Services

Provider Personal Protection Resources

·  IMS Letter: Protecting Yourself and Loved Ones from COVID-19
American College of Emergency Physicians COVID-19 Personal Checklist
CDC: Strategies to Optimize the Supply of PPA Equipment
·  NETEC: Personal Protective Equipment for COVID-19
·   IDPH: Use of Homemade Gowns When Commercial PPE In Unavailable


IDPH Issues Guidance for Reporting COVID-19 Deaths & Poison Alert 

·  Guidelines for Reporting & Certifying COVID-19 Deaths
Poison Alert: Serious Toxicity from Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine

Medicare Releases FAQ Video on Telehealth Flexibility

·  Medicare COVID-19 Telehealth FAQ video

Registration Open for IMS Telehealth Webinar 

State and federal officials, as well as commercial payers, have implemented numerous policy and regulatory changes in recent weeks to help practices implement more wide-spread telehealth services. To help practices make sense of it all, IMS has arranged for Katie Fergus, President of Des Moines-based PractiSynergy, provide an overview of both the national and state-specific billing and coding changes that have been implemented. This webinar will be held on Wednesday, April 8 from 12:00-1:00 pm.

  ·     Register to Attend

Governor Issues Updated State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration

  ·     4/2 State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration

  ·     IMS Summary of Emergency Declaration KeyProvisions (Updated 4/3/2020)


IME Issues COVID-19 Updates: Waivers, FAQs, Telehealth Billing Guidance

  ·     IME Informational Letter No. 2125 – Medicaid Waivers & FAQ Documents

  ·     IME Informational Letter No. 2126 – Telehealth Billing Guidance

New CMS Flexibilities – Telehealth; Workforce; Administrative Burden

  ·     CMS Physician Fact Sheet: Telehealth, Workforce, Administrative Burden Flexibilities

  ·     CMS Press Release: Telehealth, Workforce, Administrative Burden Flexibilities

Liability Protections & Expedited Licensure Information

The Board of Medicine has issued updated guidance on liability protections afforded to individuals volunteering during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as information for recent medical graduates to obtain expedited emergency licensure.

  ·   COVID-19 Liability Protections

  ·   IMS Summary of Emergency Declaration KeyProvisions (Updated 3/30/2020)

COVID-19 Mental Wellness and Self-Care Resources

  ·  IMS COVID-19 Mental Wellness and Self-Care Resource Page

Updated State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration

  ·    3/26 State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration

·  IMS Summary of Key Healthcare Provisions (Updated 3/27/2020) 

Linn County Medical Society Hosts COVID-19 Educational Webinar

  ·    LCMS COVID-19 Webinar Recording

Commercial Carriers COVID-19 Billing & Coding Updates

  ·       UnitedHealthcare Releases Billing & Coding Updates

o   Prior Authorization Updates

o   Telehealth Updates

o   Updated Diagnosis & Laboratory Codes


  ·      Paramount Health Options Assembles Commercial Carriers Telehealth Billing & Coding Quick Reference Guide

    o PHO Telehealth Billing & Coding QuickReference Guide 

Telehealth Billing & Coding Resources for COVID-19 – 3/25/2020

·       ·   IMS Resource Page: COVID-19 Telehealth Billing and Coding

IDPH Updates Guidance for Reporting PPE Shortages

·  Updated PPE Shortage Reporting and StockpileRequest Guidance 

AMA Releases Special Coding Advice Related to COVID-19

  ·    Special Coding Advice During COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

  ·    CPT Reporting for COVID-19 Testing

  ·    AMA Overview – CMS Payment Policies & Regulatory Flexibilities

Business Resources for COVID-19 Impacted Practices 

· IMS Resource Page: Business Resources for Impacted Practices 

CMS Relaxes Provider Enrollment Standards

· Provider Enrollment FAQ

Governor Signs New State Public Health Emergency Declaration

  · Governor’s Press Release

CMS Relaxes Quality Program Reporting Requirements

· CMS Relaxes MIPS & ACO Reporting Requirements

Childcare Assistance for Frontline Medical Staff 

· DHSChildcare Resources in Response to COVID-19

Wellmark Announces Telehealth Coverage Updates, Including Payment Parity 

·  COVID-19 Provider Communication

·  Telehealth Coverage Update Press Release 

Medicaid Issues Updated COVID-19 Billing Guidance 

  ·  IMS Informational Letter No. 2119

CMS Recommends Delaying All Elective Surgeries & Non-Essential Medical Procedures 

· CMS Procedural Recommendations

Governor Reynolds Issues a State of Public Health Disaster Emergency Declaration

Telehealth Updates 

·       CMS Announces Expanded Telehealth Benefits for Medicare Beneficiaries

o   Provider Fact Sheet

o   Medicare FAQ Document

·       HHS Office of Civil Rights Easing Enforcement of HIPAA Standards for Telehealth Services

o   Notification of Enforcement Discretion

·       Wellmark Waives Credentialing Standards, Allows Telephonic Visits, & Ensures Partial Reimbursement for Services

o   Details Available in Wellmark Provider Portal

·       UnitedHealthcare Waives Originating Site Restrictions, Allows Telephonic Visits, & Ensures Partial Reimbursement for Services

o   UHC Provider Telehealth Policies

o   UHC COVID-19 Telehealth FAQ Document

IMS Staff Working Remotely; All April IMS In-Person Meetings Cancelled 

· COVID-19 Statement From IMS President 


Public Health Disaster Emergency Declarations

COVID-19 Vaccination Resources

PPE Manufacturers and Distributors


PPE Product

Amazon Business for Healthcare

Gloves, Masks, Gowns, Goggles, Shoe Covers


Gloves, Masks, Gowns, Goggles, Shoe Covers


Gloves, Masks, Gowns, Goggles, Shoe Covers

Alpha Pro Tech

Gloves, Masks, Gowns, Goggles, Shoe Covers


Gloves, Masks, Gowns, Goggles, Shoe Covers


Gloves, Masks, Protective Suits, Goggles


Face Shields, Goggles, Respirators


Masks, Respirators


Masks, Respirators


Masks, Respirators

San-M Package Company

Masks, Caps


Mask, Goggles





Iowa Made

Stock Medical Supply

Face Shields

Gloves, Masks, Face Shields, Gowns, Goggles, Protective Suits

Elective Surgeries & Nonessential Medical Procedures

Provider Personal Protection

Personal Protective Equipment & Medical Supplies


Volunteer to Help with Disaster Response


Patient Education

COVID-19 Practice Guidelines & Resources



Billing & Coding





UHC COVID-19 Policy Flexibilities Phase Our Schedule: (Updated 6/1/2020)
  • June 1 – All prior authorization requirements and site of service reviews resume.

  • June 24 – Telehealth flexibilities extended through this date for Individual and fully-insured Group Market plans.
  • June 30 – Claims with a date of service on or after Jan. 1, 2020 will not be denied for timely filing if submitted by
  • UHC: Summary of COVID-19 Dates by Program

General Resources

Administrative Resources

External Resource Pages

    Partner Organizations

    LifeServe Blood Center

    LifeServe Blood Center is looking to collect COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma (CCP) from patients who have had a confirmed SARS-CoV-19 diagnosis and subsequent resolution of symptoms. They have issued CCP donor guidance.


    Business Resources for COVID-19 Impacted Practices
    IMS has assembled a resource page to help connect Iowa physicians and clinic administrators to short- and long-term resources to aid in responding to the business implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Telehealth Billing & Coding Resources for COVID-19
    IMS has assembled a resource page to help Iowa physicians and clinic administrators easily locate the numerous policy changes and resources related to the administration of telehealth services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    COVID-19 Physician Wellness and Self-Care
    IMS has assembled a resource page to connect Iowa physicians and clinic administrators to mental health and wellness resources to help care for themselves during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The Iowa Medical  Society is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. 515 E Locust St. Ste. 400 50309

    Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software