Enjoy your St. Patrick’s Day NCMS Morning Rounds 

March 17, 2021

Thinking ahead: What is one thing that has changed for the positive during the pandemic that you would like to see become part of post-pandemic life? RESPOND HERE. The most interesting responses may be published in the upcoming NCMS Bulletin magazine.

Medicare Reimbursement for COVID-19 Vaccine Doubles

On Monday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that the Medicare reimbursement for administration of the COVID-19 vaccine would nearly double.

The rate will increase from approximately $28 to $40 for the administration of single-dose vaccines and from approximately $45 to $80 for the administration of COVID-19 vaccines requiring two doses. The exact payment rate for administration of each dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will depend on the type of entity that furnishes the service and will be geographically adjusted based on where the service is furnished.

As vaccine supplies are increasing advocacy by the AMA and national specialty societies worked to help ensure that you receive adequate reimbursement for administering these vaccines as a key step in ending the pandemic. The updated Medicare payment rate reflects the additional resources necessary to ensure the vaccine is administered safely and appropriately. The costs are incorporated into the new CPT code 99072 and are bundled with COVID immunization administration payments. Patients do not incur any charge for the vaccine.

Learn more here.

Be Alert to Diabetes Prevention and Management

Diabetes Alert Day is next Tuesday, March 23, and the NC Diabetes Advisory Council reminds you that diabetes is a significant issue in our state. According to the NC Guide to Diabetes Prevention and Management (‘the Guide’), almost half of people in NC either have prediabetes (34.5 percent) or diabetes (12.5 percent), with a total of 1/3 million North Carolinians who have either Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. This is a 33 percent increase over the past 10 years.

The Guide addresses diabetes as a complex disease that is impacted by social determinants of health at the individual, relationship, community and societal levels. It also serves as a call to action to prevent and manage diabetes in NC, and its purpose is to:

1. Increase understanding of the impact of diabetes in North Carolina
2. Provides specific strategies to assist people managing their risk for developing and/or managing diabetes, including reducing risk of complications
3. Describe opportunities to reduce the burden of diabetes using policy and advocacy in NC

To learn more about the Guide, register for the March 23 webinar. Click here and register today!

Looking for Lifelong Success and Fulfillment?

Clark Gaither, MD, FAAFP, medical director for the NC Professionals Health Program, recently collaborated with Maria N Tolstykh, an I/O Psychologist and Founder of Sustainable Work, along with 20 other experts in a summit called ‘Sustainability at Work: Tools and Solutions to Lifelong Success and Fulfillment.’

As a result of this collaboration, Dr. Gaither, also known for his blog and writings as ‘Dr. Burnout’ helping medical professionals avoid and overcome burnout, is sharing the knowledge and insights gained in a free online series to help you discover sustainable balance and fulfillment in your work and life.

Learn more and sign up here.

In the News

ECRI Says COVID-19 Has Made Racial Disparities Biggest Healthcare Safety Concern, Health Care Dive, 3-15-21

Learning Opportunity

The Confidentiality of Substance Use Disorder Records: Comprehensive Overview and Recent Changes, March 24 at 12:30 PM. Register here.

If you have policies you’d like your NCMS Board of Directors to consider, please complete the Board input form here. Thanks for reading!