A quick round-up of updates on COVID-19 guidance and resources from AAP, WCAAP, DOH, and the WMC.
New Guidance from AAP
The AAP has recently released new and updated guidance related to COVID-19:
- Caring for Patients in Inpatient and Outpatient Settings During Episodes of Surge
- Outpatient Management Strategies; Monoclonal Antibody Therapy
- Return to Sports and Physical Activity
Updated COVID-19 Symptom Decision Trees for Schools: On Monday, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) updated its K-12 Schools Requirements 2021-2022 (wa.gov) providing easy to navigate COVID-19 Symptom Decision Trees for Schools (wa.gov) . WCAAP extends huge kudos and gratitude to DOH’s Dr. Bob Lutz and Lacy Fehrenbach for their ongoing innovation and leadership in safe return to school and our WCAAP back-to-school leadership team, Frank Bell, Amy Carter, Maria Huang, and Danielle Zerr.
Sign up for the Power of Providers Initiative! The Washington State Department of Health is asking health care providers to commit to SEEK, ASK/EDUCATE, VACCINATE and EMPOWER as part of the Power of Providers Initiative (POP). The goal of the POP Initiative is to recognize the power all health care providers have in encouraging COVID-19 vaccination in the community. POP is backed by Governor Jay Inslee, Secretary of Health Dr. Umair A. Shah, and many other health care associations across the state. As part of the initiative, the department is asking for health care providers to commit to four steps:
- SEEK: Seek patients’ COVID-19 vaccination status.
- ASK/EDUCATE: If a patient isn’t vaccinated, ask them about the vaccine and offer education if they’re unsure.
- VACCINATE: If a patient agrees to vaccination, provide them with a COVID-19 vaccine or a referral to a location that provides COVID-19 vaccination. •
- EMPOWER: Empower your patients to share their vaccination status with the community.
To get involved, we are asking providers to sign a commitment to follow the four steps through an online survey. When you complete the commitment form, the Department of Health will send you a Community Vaccination Partner certificate which you can display in your office. The Department of Health will also offer additional support and materials to providers who sign up to help them have conversations about COVID-19 vaccination with their communities. For more information, visit the POP web page.
From Washington State Medical Commission: There is a route for investigating practitioners who prescribe ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine for COVID; or for those who provide a mask exemption without documenting an appropriate medical need. https://wmc.wa.gov/sites/default/files/public/Newsletter/COVID19Misinformationfall2021.pdf
“The Washington Medical Commission’s (WMC) position on COVID-19 prevention and treatment is that COVID-19 is a disease process like other disease processes, and as such, treatment and advice provided by physicians and physician assistants will be assessed in the same manner as any other disease process. Treatments and recommendations regarding this disease that fall below standard of care as established by medical experts, federal authorities and legitimate medical research are potentially subject to disciplinary action.”