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Nov. 9th COVID-19 Update

New updates pertaining to the COVID-19 emergency continue to be announced by both the state and federal government on a regular basis. The latest developments for providers of long-term/post-acute care (LTPAC) and senior services are reviewed below.

As a reminder, LeadingAge NY continues to convene weekly webinars on Mondays at 11 a.m. to address emerging questions on COVID-19. A recording of our most recent webinar, held on Nov. 8th, is available here, and a list of the items shared by LeadingAge NY staff in the webinar chat can be accessed here. If you have questions for next week’s update or would like the access information, please contact Jeff Diamond.

Cross-Sector Updates

New Developments in Health Care Personnel COVID-19 Vaccination Mandates

Health care providers in New York State are facing several new developments in COVID-19 vaccination mandates this week. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued its long-awaited omnibus health care personnel vaccination regulation on Nov. 5th, while the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit issued an opinion on religious exemptions from New York’s health care personnel vaccination mandate on Nov. 4th and the state Department of Health (DOH) released an updated Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document on religious exemptions on Nov. 8th. Click here for more information on these developments.

OSHA Issues Vaccination Mandate for Employers with 100+ Employees

On Nov. 5th, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published its new Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) mandating that employers with 100 or more employees require all employees to get fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or be required to wear a face covering and undergo weekly testing. Click here for a summary of the ETS requirements.

Nursing Home and Adult Care Facility (ACF)/Assisted Living Updates

DOH Urges ACFs and Nursing Homes to Get Booster Vaccination Clinics Scheduled Before the Thanksgiving Holiday

DOH has asked for our assistance in helping to ensure that all residents of nursing homes and ACFs have access to booster shots in advance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Using the data received from the Supplemental Survey conducted recently regarding COVID-19 booster clinics, the Department has identified providers that have not yet scheduled a COVID-19 booster vaccine clinic and is reaching out to try to ensure that clinics are scheduled to occur, ideally, by the end of next week. If members are experiencing any barriers to arranging clinics or otherwise making booster shots available to residents or staff, please let us know so we can assist.

Affordable Housing/Independent Living Updates

COVID-19 Supplemental Payments Request Form Now Available

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has posted its COVID-19 Supplemental Payments (CSP) request form. Owners can now submit payment requests for expenses incurred between March 27, 2020 and Oct. 31, 2021.

The request form is available here, with further explanation and technical tips for filling out the form here.

The deadline to submit reimbursement requests to HUD or to the Contract Administrator is next Friday, Nov. 19th.

Click here for more information on CSPs from LeadingAge National.

HUD Weighs in on Visitation Policies

HUD has announced an agreement to resolve resident complaints against a property’s visitor restriction policies stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic. Demetria McCain, HUD’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, said of the originating complaint:

“While housing providers can certainly take reasonable precautions to protect their residents from COVID-19, such as requiring residents and visitors to wear masks or maintain social distancing in public areas of an apartment building, they may not impose blanket prohibitions on any visits from children no matter what precautions are taken, thus keeping residents from visiting with family and friends in their own homes.”

More information from LeadingAge National is available here.