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February 2021
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Medicare to cover monoclonal antibody COVID-19 treatments

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on November 10 announced that Medicare will cover out-of-pocket costs for monoclonal antibody drugs for COVID-19 during the public health emergency. The agency’s coverage includes Eli Lilly’s bamlanivimab, which recently received an emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 12, 2020
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ECRI: More than half of disposable gowns tested don’t meet protection standards

Editor's Note A new analysis by ECRI shows that 52% of the disposable isolation gowns it tested failed to meet standard levels of protection, putting healthcare workers at risk of exposure to bloodborne or other pathogens as well as COVID-19. ECRI announced November 10 that it has issued a high-priority…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 10, 2020
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CMS: How to prepare for COVID-19 vaccine

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on November 5 released a set of toolkits and enrollment actions to take to administer the COVID-19 vaccine when it’s available. Many Medicare-enrolled providers don’t have to take any actions until the vaccine is available. Some Medicare-enrolled providers must also…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 5, 2020
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CMS penalizes 2,545 hospitals for high readmissions

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will penalize and reduce a year’s worth of payments to nearly half of the nation’s hospitals because of 30-day readmission rates, the November 2 Kaiser Health News reports. The penalties are part of the ninth year of the Hospital Readmissions…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 3, 2020
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Effect of elective surgery cancellation on ICU capacity in New York State

Editor's Note Suspension of elective surgical procedures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in New York State had only a minor effect on ICU capacity, this study finds. State authorities suspended all elective surgical procedures in mid-March 2020 to increase hospital and ICU bed capacity. However, the effect of canceling…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 2, 2020
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Eight hospitals postponing elective surgery in response to COVID-19 resurgence

Editor's Note Hospitals nationwide are beginning once again to suspend elective surgical procedures in response to an increase in hospitalized COVID-19 patients, the October 30 Becker’s Hospital Review reports. The following eight hospitals are postponing or canceling surgical procedures to free up bed capacity, ensure staffing, or to make sure…

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By: Judy Mathias
November 2, 2020
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CMS issues coverage plan for COVID-19 vaccines, treatments

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on October 28 issued an interim final rule that requires CMS to cover any COVID-19 vaccines that receive Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorization at no cost to beneficiaries. The rule also will increase what Medicare pays hospitals for COVID-19…

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By: Judy Mathias
October 29, 2020
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Joint Commission selected to provide VA lab accreditation

Editor's Note The Joint Commission announced October 27 that it had been selected to provide Laboratory Accreditation Program services for the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). These services will be provided for moderate and high-complexity clinical laboratories at VA Medical Centers and community-based outpatient clinics. Services include education on…

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By: Judy Mathias
October 28, 2020
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Most OR nurse leaders find jobs rewarding despite COVID-19

Results from the 2020 annual OR Manager Salary/Career Survey show that despite the turbulent times, most OR leaders view their work favorably; 77% are satisfied with their jobs, with nearly a third describing themselves as “completely satisfied.” This might seem surprising in light of COVID-19, but many nurse leaders are…

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By: Cynthia Saver, MS, RN
October 21, 2020
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Editorial

Surveys this past year seem to have proliferated, many of them related to the COVID-19 pandemic. What has worked? What hasn’t? What are the next steps? Resuming surgical procedures after the springtime hiatus has helped regain some lost ground. Even as cases of the virus surged in many parts of…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
October 21, 2020
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