COVID-19 Resources 

May 6, 2020

 

We are moving to Phase 1! 

On May 5th, Governor Cooper modified North Carolina’s Stay At Home Executive Order, transitioning the state to Phase 1 of slowly easing COVID-19 restrictions. Executive Order 138 goes into on Friday, May 8 at 5 pm. 

 

Highlights of Phase 1 include:

  • Any retail business may open at 50 percent capacity. Businesses will be required to practice social distancing, perform frequent cleanings, provide hand sanitizer when available, screen workers for symptoms and more.
  • People may leave their homes for commercial activity at any business that is open. 
  • Certain businesses remain closed, including bars, personal care businesses, entertainment venues, and gyms. Restaurants may only continue to serve customers for drive-through, take-out and delivery. 
  • Teleworking is still encouraged for businesses that can practice it.
  • Cloth face coverings are recommended when you leave the house and may be near other people who are not family or household members.

 

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) created several materials to help businesses navigate Phase 1, including:

  • NCDHHS Checklist for Business Owners
  • Interim Guidance for Owners, Staff, and Patrons of Businesses
  • Symptom Screening Checklist
  • Templates to Meet Required Signage

 

DHHS also previewed a new campaign, Know Your Ws! While North Carolinians should still stay home, if they go out, they should know their Ws: Wear. Wait. Wash.

  • Wear a face covering,
  • Wait 6 feet apart from other people.
  • Wash your hands often and

A Know Your Ws flyer is available in English and Spanish. More materials will be coming.

 

 

April 24, 2020

Good afternoon State and Local CFAC members, Brain Injury Advisory Council Members, DMHDDSAS Commission Members, Provider Partners, and LME/MCO CEOs,

 

I have two pieces of information to share with you from NC Medicaid regarding COVID-19:

  • Suspending copays on COLVID-19 related services. NCDHHS is directing providers to stop collecting copayments from Medicaid and NC Health Choice beneficiaries on all COVID-19 related testing, services and treatments. Effective retroactive to Jan. 1, 2020, this suspension is required of states taking advantage of federal Medicaid funding available through the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act passed March 18, 2020. Providers who have already collected copays for COVID-19 related services should make every effort to return those payments to beneficiaries.

NC Medicaid will reimburse providers for lost copay revenue. The reimbursement method and timing will be announced in the future. Note that providers can continue to collect copays for non-COVID-19 related services.

A list of affected billing codes, direction about managing copays already collected, and other important information is included in SPECIAL BULLETIN COVID-19 #62: Clinical Policy Modifications – Suspending Copays on COVID-19-related Services.

 

 

April 17, 2020

Behavioral Health

State and Local CFAC members, Brain Injury Advisory Council Members, DMHDDSAS Commission Members, Provider Partners, and LME/MCO CEOs,

 

Effective April 16, 2020, NC Medicaid, in partnership with the DHHS Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services (DMHDDSAS), is temporarily modifying its Behavioral Health and Intellectual and Developmental Disability Clinical Coverage Policies to better enable the delivery of care to NC Medicaid, NC Health Choice and State-funded individuals in response to the COVID-9 Pandemic.

 

These temporary changes are retroactive to March 10, 2020. and will end the earlier of the cancellation of the North Carolina state of emergency declaration or when the policy modification is rescinded. When the temporary modifications end, all prior service requirements will resume.  Please note that additional guidance on telephonic outpatient therapy is forthcoming and will be provided in a separate bulletin.

 

For more information, see SPECIAL BULLETIN COVID-19 #46: Behavioral Health Service Flexibilities.

Telehealth

State and Local CFAC members, Brain Injury Advisory Council Members, DMHDDSAS Commission Members, Provider Partners, and LME/MCO CEOs,

 

The Department of Health and Human Services and NC Medicaid is reaching out to beneficiaries to share the benefits of receiving care using telehealth services. For many people, telehealth is a new option and our Medicaid providers have shared that some patients are hesitant to use technology to “see” their doctor. With telehealth being an important way to receive services while avoiding the risk of exposure to COVID-19 by leaving the home, DHHS and NC Medicaid have developed a video and a flyer to help alleviate some of these concerns and encourage beneficiaries to talk with their doctors about using telehealth to get the care they need to stay healthy.

 

The video and flyer are both available on the Beneficiary COVID-19 Guidance and Resource webpage of the NC Medicaid website. A printable version of the flyer is also attached for your convenience. These resources include the different types of services available through telehealth; how telehealth can help individuals stay healthy—especially during the COVID-19 public health emergency; technology available for telehealth; and how to ask a doctor about using telehealth in place of an office visit.

 

With over 1.2 million Medicaid beneficiaries throughout the state, telehealth is a significant tool to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. We appreciate your help in sharing these tools with health care professionals and beneficiaries who will benefit from this information.

 

April 15, 2020

NC Division of Health Benefits update:

The NC Division of Health Benefits (DHB) has updated its COVID-19 Special Bulletin to add telehealth services to the existing LEA Policy (10C).  The changes are retroactive to March 10, 2020. A summary of the LEA-specific contents of the bulletin, including allowable codes for adding the telehealth modifiers, is available via the following link:

 

The recently published Virtual Related Services (VRS):Frequently Asked Questions document will be updated to reflect the additions referenced above.

For information regarding psychological/counseling assessment and treatment services referenced in the NC Division of Health Benefits Policy 10C, please review this document, available on the 'Resources' page of the NCDPI Exceptional Children Division Medicaid in Education website

 

 

As things continue to change and move quickly during the COVID-19 pandemic, please continue to stay abreast of emerging issues, guidance, and policies by visiting:

 

Broad information and updates: https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-response-north-carolina

Policy and Guidance updates:  https://www.ncdhhs.gov/covid-19-guidance

COVID19 Executive Orders:  https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/covid19/executive-orders

 

 

Thank you for your dedication and service to North Carolina BH and IDD consumers and families.

 

April 8, 2020

NC Medicaid Telehealth Billing Summary

DHHS will increase fee-for-service Medicaid reimbursement rates by 5% for occupational therapists.  

 

 

April, 7, 2020

 Medicaid Bulletin on Outpatient Specialized Therapies

 

Other Resources

The Role of Occupational Therapy: Providing Care in a Pandemic

WellCare COVID Guide

Resource Sheet for COVID-19 and Telehealth

DHHS coronavirus webpage

AOTA also has provided guidelines for your reference