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COVID-19 Update: June 12, 2020

Coronavirus update for Friday, June 12 as of 4:00 p.m.

A Note About SNAP’s COVID-19 Updates

Beginning the week of June 15, SNAP will prepare COVID-19 updates on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, with additional updates as needed on subjects that are especially timely or important.  SNAP members and update subscribers will continue to receive their updates near the close of the business day and those updates will continue to be posted in this space the following morning.

Pennsylvania Update

The Wolf Administration

Governor Wolf and Secretary of Health Levine signed amended green phase orders for 12 counties to move to the green phase of reopening at 12:01 a.m. on June 12.  With these orders taking effect, there will be 46 counties in green and 21 counties in yellow.

In addition, eight more counties will move to the green phase of reopening at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, June 19.

Department of Human Services

DHS has published a Medical Assistance Bulletin advising providers that they may not charge Medical Assistance beneficiaries for personal protective equipment used in connection with medical or dental services.

Department of Health – by the numbers

  • Today’s COVID-19 death count is comparable to what it has been in recent days but the new case count is up slightly.
  • 901 Pennsylvanians are currently hospitalized for COVID-19 and 195 of them are on ventilators – both figures much lower than yesterday’s.
  • 40 percent of state hospitals’ acute-care beds, 40 percent of their ICU beds, 57 percent of their pediatric beds, and 30 percent of their pediatric ICU beds are currently unoccupied.

State Legislature

The Senate has canceled its session for next week.  The House is scheduled to return to session on June 22.

Federal Update

Department of Health and Human Services

  • As we reported previously, HHS will be distributing $10 billion in CARES Act Provider Relief Fund grants to hospitals that have served especially large numbers of COVID-19 patients. To apply for these grants, hospitals must submit data to HHS via its teletracking web site.  See below for:

Hospitals must submit their data no later than 9:00 pm (eastern) on Monday, June 15.

  • HHS’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued guidance on how the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) privacy rule permits covered health care providers to contact their patients who have recovered from COVID-19 to inform them about how they can donate their blood and plasma containing antibodies to help other patients with COVID-19. See the announcement here and the guidance here.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

In the past week CMS issued five section 1135 waivers to give states greater flexibility to serve their Medicaid beneficiaries during the COVID-19 public health emergency.  It issued waivers to Delaware, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Wisconsin.

Food and Drug Administration

National Institutes of Health

NIH’s National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities is accepting applications for research to evaluate interventions that might lessen the impact of COVID-19 on populations that suffer from health disparities or other vulnerabilities to the virus.  Learn more here.

Resources to Consult

Pennsylvania Department of Human Services

Main COVID-19 Page

COVID-19 Provider Resources

Press Releases

Pennsylvania Department of Health

Main COVID-19 Page

PA Health Alert Network

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Main COVID-19 Page

FAQ

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Filed in Coronavirus, COVID-19.

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2012 Safety-Net Association of Pennsylvania