COVID-19 Updates and Resources


Clinical Information & Resources

Treatment Guidelines

Alameda County

Alameda County COVID-19 Vaccination Information: Click here.

Alameda County Public Health Department of Communicable Disease Section: (510) 267-3250 from 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM on weekdays. After-hours calls should be directed to (925) 422-7595 and ask for the public health duty officer on call.

Contra Costa County

Contra Costa County COVID-19 Vaccination Information: Click here.

Contra Costa Public Health Department: Coronavirus Call Center: (844) 729-8410.

City of Berkeley

Berkeley COVID-19 Information: Click here.

Berkeley Public Health Division: (510) 981-5292 from 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM on weekdays. After-hours calls should be directed to (510) 981-5911 and ask for the Health Officer on call.

California Department of Public Health

Center for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)'s "Prepare to Care for COVID-19" is a resource clinicians can use to care for patients with COVID-19. This resource contains practical tools for treating COVID-19 patients and will be regularly updated to help clinicians adapt to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.

Specialty-Specific Guidelines

A comprehensive list of specialty-specific COVID-19 guidelines, compiled by MIEC.

Practice Management Resources

Managing Your Practice Through COVID-19

This one-hour recorded training provides private practice physicians with the information needed to manage the COVID-19 crisis while maintaining your practice. Learn how to handle layoffs with a labor law expert, manage the cash flow in your practice, and learn more about telemedicine codes as you navigate your practice through this challenging time.

Financial Assistance Resources

CMA Financial Aid Toolkit

During the COVID-19 pandemic, physician practices are confronting operational and business challenges as they continue to deliver high-quality care to their patients. Medical practices will need to make difficult choices about whether to make significant changes that could include changing how they deliver care or even closing their practices. CMA has compiled a financial toolkit for medical practices:

Intuit Aid Assist

Intuit Aid Assist is a free service that allows businesses, self-employed, contractors, and others to understand and access different business relief programs. Individuals and businesses can complete a loan eligibility assessment to see if they qualify for any federal funding programs.

 

New Paycheck Protection Program 

The federal economic relief law includes nearly $350 billion in funding to create a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that will provide small businesses and other entities with zero-fee loans of up to $10 million. Up to 8 weeks of average payroll and other costs will be forgiven if the business retains its employees and their salary levels. Principal and interest are deferred for up to a year and all borrower fees are waived. This temporary emergency assistance through the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Department of Treasury can be used in coordination with other COVID-financing assistance established in the bill or any other existing SBA loan program. The bill requires the SBA Administrator to set a cap on how much a bank can earn to process loan applications and prioritize underserved borrowers, including those in rural communities, minorities, women, and veterans. You can apply through any existing SBA lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating.  Click here for more information about the program. Click here for an information sheet for borrowers.

 

Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program and New Grant 

SBA will work directly with state governors to provide targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and non-profits that have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. 

The federal economic relief law includes $10 billion in grant funding to provide an advance of $10,000 to small businesses and nonprofits that apply for an SBA economic injury disaster loan (EIDL) within three days of applying for the loan. EIDLs are loans of up to $2 million that carry interest rates up to 3.75% for companies and up to 2.75% for nonprofits, as well as principal and interest deferment for up to 4 years. The loans may be used to pay for expenses that could have been met had the disaster not occurred, including payroll and other operating expenses. The new $10,000 EIDL grant does not need to be repaid, even if the grantee is subsequently denied an EIDL, and may be used to provide paid sick leave to employees, maintaining payroll, meet increased production costs due to supply chain disruptions or pay business obligations, including debts, rent, and mortgage payments. Eligible grant recipients must have been in operation on January 31, 2020. The grant is available to small businesses, private nonprofits, sole proprietors and independent contractors, tribal businesses, as well as cooperatives and employee-owned businesses. 

A business that receives an EIDL between January 31, 2020, and June 30, 2020, as a result of the COVID-19 disaster declaration is eligible to apply for a PPP loan or the business may refinance their EIDL into a PPP loan. In either case, the emergency EIDL grant award of up to $10,000 would be subtracted from the amount forgiven in the payroll protection plan. To apply for a COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan, click here

 

Express Bridge Loans 

Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program allows small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 with less paperwork. These loans can provide vital economic support to help small businesses overcome the temporary loss of revenue and can be term loans or used to bridge the gap while applying for a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan. If a small business has an urgent need for cash while waiting for decision and disbursement on Economic Injury Disaster Loan, they may qualify for an SBA Express Disaster Bridge Loan. 

 

AMA Tips for Keeping Your Practice in Business During the COVID-19 Pandemic: 

Physician practices managing patients during the COVID-19 pandemic are confronting new and unique operational and business challenges. This checklist provides high-level guidance for practice owners and administrators. Check out the AMA COVID-19 checklist to stay up to date.

 

Disaster Relief Loans

Small businesses in Alameda and Contra Costa counties are eligible for disaster relief loans from the US Small Business Administration as a result of COVID-19:

PPE Supplies, Requests, and Guidances

The ACCMA and the California Medical Association (CMA) are continuing to provide PPE at no cost to physician practices and clinics in Alameda and Contra Costa counties for a small shipping fee. N95 masks, surgical masks, isolation gowns, face shields, vinyl gloves, goggles, coveralls, and hand sanitizers may be ordered through the PPE Relief Portal (click here for specs). PPE supplies are shipped directly to medical offices. This program will run as long as supply lasts. Please contact the ACCMA at accma@accma.org or (510) 654-5383 for more information.

The ACCMA has developed PPE Guidance for Independent Practices, bringing together resources and information regarding PPE requests and PPE use. If you have any questions or any additional information to add to the document, please contact the ACCMA by calling 510-654-5383 or emailing accma@accma.org.

Please see the attached table with contact information for organizations that are able to provide personal protective equipment (PPE), medical supplies, medical equipment, and cleaning/disinfecting supplies.

Guidance for Health Care Operations

The California Department of Public Health has released guidelines on resuming California’s deferred and preventive health care for physicians, hospitals, dentists, and skilled nursing facilities.

Click here for a comparison grid showing a side-by-side rundown of CMA’s guidelines for reopening the health care system in California vs. the guidelines released by the California Department of Public Health, as they pertain to physicians.

Guidance for Licensed Facilities (04/14/20)

Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD) and Contra Costa Health Services (CCHS) each issued Orders for all Licensed Facilities and Other Agencies, as well as their staff, contractors and any essential visitors entering those sites to comply with guidance to control the spread of COVID-19. The Orders become effective at 12:01 AM on Tuesday, April 14, 2020.

New guidelines for licensed facilities include:

  • Temperature check for all staff, contractors, and other essential visitors before entering the facility.
  • All individuals entering the facility must self-evaluate for mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms, including fever, sore throat, coughing, shortness of breath, or general weakness in the last 7 days.
  • All individuals with a temperature of 100° F or 37.8° C or greater should be prohibited from entering the facility.
  • All staff, residents, and other essential visitors should wear masks to cover their nose and mouth while in the facility and, for residents, outside their rooms. Appropriate and recommended PPE must be worn by staff when available if there is a confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case at the facility.
  • All group activities and communal dining must be canceled. Staff and residents should maintain a physical distance of 6 feet apart when leaving their rooms.
  • If a resident who is suspected or confirmed of having COVID-19 is being transferred to an acute care hospital, the hospital, EMS, and transport agencies should be notified. The facility should notify EMS and the receiving hospital if the facility already has COVID-19 cases.
  • Avoid, as much as possible, staffing scenarios that use employees who have worked at another Licensed Facility or Other Agency in the past 14 days. Facilities must keep a daily log of employees present, identifying any other facilities the employees have worked at in the previous 14 days, and that log must be produced immediately if requested by any staff member of the ACPHD.

The Alameda-Contra Costa Medical Association is closely partnering with the Alameda County Public Health Department (ACPHD)'s Long-Term Care Facility Task Force. This new order aims to keep patients safer by making compliance mandatory. Review the full order here.

Contra Costa Health Services has issued a similar order, outlining the same guidelines above.

Templates & Resources

  • Template Memo to Medical Practice Employees  - recommended by Debra Phairas of Practice & Liability Consultants to assist medical practices in reducing liability exposure.
     
  • Mary Jean Sage, of The Sage Associates, has compiled a list of companies that physicians can use when looking for a HIPAA Compliant E-Signature Company. Most physicians may be able to use the e-signature company that comes with their EHR/PM system, however other e-signature company options are available. Most of the companies on this list have websites where users can watch a demo and obtain pricing.
     
  • The American Medical Association (AMA) released a guide tailored to physician practices, helping physician employers consider their options in controlling practice costs. Key options include redeployment, outside activities, compensation changes, workforce reduction, benefit modifications, legal compliance and stimulus relief considerations. Review the full guide to learn more key options for physicians to consider to limit practice costs.