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CASA ASC COVID-19 Resources 3.30.2020

The updates and response to COVID-19 rapidly change each day.  As you are responding to the needs of your patients, ASC and community, we are working to provide you with resources to assist you in navigating the pandemic response.

California healthcare providers are busy preparing for the anticipated surge of COVID-19 patients.  ASCs will be utilized in the response, although how they interact will vary by county.  All ASCs should have reached out to their Medical Health Operations Area Coordinator (MHOAC) and be in on-going communication.  Individual counties have been reaching out to CASA for regional ASC contacts and survey information.  We encourage you to prepare for your response, including staffing, staff competencies, supply inventory and equipment inventory (anesthesia machines, gurneys, infusion pumps, etc.) including model and serial numbers, estimated value, etc. 

Governor Newsom Announces California Health Corps, a Major Initiative to Expand Health Care Workforce to Fight COVID-19

Governor Newsom has executed an executive order to expand the health care workforce and staff at least an additional 50,000 hospital beds needed for the COVID-19 surge. As part of the executive order, Governor Newsom announced a website referred to as  California HealthCorps.  The site allows physicians, RNs, pharmacists etc. to register their willingness to serve.  Eligible professionals will be paid, given malpractice insurance coverage and matched to the best of their ability for geographical preference.  This is an opportunity for medical providers to play a critical role in responding to this public health emergency in your region.

Accelerated/Advance Payments for Medicare Providers

On March 28, 2020, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced an expansion of its accelerated and advance payment program for Medicare participating health care providers and suppliers, to ensure they have the resources needed to combat the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). This program expansion, which includes changes from the recently enacted Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, is one way that CMS is working to lessen the financial hardships of providers facing extraordinary challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and ensures the nation’s providers can focus on patient care. 

You can find a copy of the fact sheet here:

On Friday, March 27, 2020, President Donald Trump signed H.R. 748, the third package of legislation to provide relief and support in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. ASCs should contact their business partners who assist with tax and lending issues to discuss how the options created by this legislation might apply to an individual ASC. The full text of the legislation is available here.

According to ASCA, under the new law, ASCs can attempt to access three possible sources of financial assistance:

  • About $350 billion in loans for small business designed to provide stability in light of the uncertain economic conditions caused by COVID-19; the maximum loan amount would be increased to $10 million, and loans would be forgivable if certain conditions are met.
  • About $450 billion in loans, loan guarantees and other investments for businesses; these funds flow through the Federal Reserve.
  • $100 billion reserved for healthcare providers to make up lost revenue or support additional costs that are attributable to the corona virus; this fund will be administered by the US Department of Health and Human Services subject to guidance and requirements issued by the department.

The legislation would also make changes to the tax code, provide flexibility for telehealth services and extend programs under Medicare and Medicaid. Additionally, the legislation would limit paid leave requirements instituted in previous legislation and ensure that federal funding for leave is provided through advance tax credits. The bill also included rebate checks from the Internal Revenue Service to individuals and families and expanded unemployment insurance, among other provisions.

While it is likely that Congress will pass a fourth legislative package, it is unclear when work on that bill will begin or what the scope of that legislation might be.

Economic Preparations and Relief

Provided below are additional links to address economic issues.  CASA will continue to update as we receive additional information.

Economic Issues


Additional Updates

The State of California has launched a New Comprehensive, Consumer-Friendly Website and Public Service Announcements to Boost COVID-19 Awareness.

ASCA COVID-19 Resource Page

ASCA Free COVID-19 Webinar

CASA & ASCA Consensus response on COVID-19 

Coronavirus Aid Relief And Economic Security Act H R 748 03 25 2020

ASC Covid-19 Action Plan

All ASCs should adopt the following:

  1. It is imperative that all ASCs are coordinating with their local department of public health.  This will assure you receive  the latest information and recommendations in your area. 

  2. Implement CDC guidance and stay up to date by visiting these critical websites.
  3. Implement rigorous screening for patients and visitors prior to entering the facility.
  4. Maintain a safe environment for patients, employees and visitors, including adherence to social distancing recommendations.

  5. Implement enhanced cleaning as directed by CDC guidelines.
  6. As hospitals are implementing their disaster operations, ASCs should be responding likewise and coordinating their plan in conjunction with their local emergency medical response. If you need guidance with policies and a comprehensive emergency plan see the resources listed below.
  7. As you implement your emergency plan, your governing body should work together to address a policy on prioritizing elective vs urgent elective surgical procedures.

Additional Tools and Consideration

Signs and Posters

Economic Issues


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