Surge in COVID Cases Needs Immediate Congressional Action;
AMGA Calls for Additional Funding Support, Policy Improvements for Frontline Providers
Alexandria, VA – In response to the surge in positive COVID-19 cases and the increase in hospitalizations, AMGA today called on Congress to provide additional support for healthcare providers. With daily COVID-19 cases topping more than 181,000 in a single day, and hospitalizations reaching a record high of more than 69,000, AMGA members are preparing for an increase of patients by postponing or canceling procedures so that the staffing, personal protective equipment, and hospital space are available for patients with COVID-19.
“Earlier this year, Congress recognized the need for an immediate response to support healthcare providers,” said AMGA President and CEO Jerry Penso, M.D., M.B.A. “Based on the current facts on the ground and this rapid increase in cases, additional financial support is now needed.”
AMGA recommends that Congress replenish the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund (Provider Relief Fund) and instruct federal regulators to restart Medicare’s Accelerated and Advance Payments (AAP) program. These two programs offer critical financial assistant to providers that are facing increased costs due to COVID and a disruption of their usual patterns of care.
In addition, Congress also should permanently lift the geographic and originating site restrictions that normally limit the availability of telehealth, which has proven to be an invaluable tool for reaching patients during this pandemic. Patients accustomed to such care will expect it to be available after COVID-19 subsides.
AMGA’s letter to the congressional leadership is available here.
AMGA is a trade association leading the transformation of health care in America. Representing multispecialty medical groups and integrated systems of care, we advocate, educate, innovate, and empower our members to deliver the next level of high performance health. AMGA is the national voice promoting awareness of our members’ recognized excellence in the delivery of coordinated, high-quality, high-value care. More than 175,000 physicians practice in our member organizations, delivering care to one in three Americans.
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