FDA News Release – Multiple Sclerosis

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, News

On March 26, 2021, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the marketing of a new device indicated for use as a short-term treatment of gait deficit due to mild to moderate symptoms from multiple sclerosis (MS). The device is intended to be used by prescription only as an adjunct to a supervised therapeutic exercise program in patients 22 years …

U.S. Calls for Pause on Johnson & Johnson Vaccine After Rare Clotting Cases

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, News

The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control will stop using the vaccine at federal sites and urge states to do so as well while they examine the safety issues. WASHINGTON — Federal health agencies on Tuesday called for an immediate pause in use of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose coronavirus vaccine after six recipients in the United States developed …

CDC Update – Testing

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Featured

A robust and responsive testing infrastructure is essential to our success in stopping the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. This overview describes current information on the categories of tests used to detect SARS-CoV-2 infection and the intended strategies for use of those tests, including to diagnose infection, to screen in an effort to reduce asymptomatic or presymptomatic …

Expect More RAC Audits

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, News

In 2021, Medicare is celebrating its 55th year of providing health insurance to Americans. The program was first signed into law in 1965 and began offering coverage in 1966. That first year, 19 million Americans enrolled in Medicare for their healthcare coverage. As of 2019, more than 61 million Americans were enrolled in the program. President Biden is broadening the …

OIG – CMS Use of Staffing Data

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Featured

The OIG performed an audit review focusing on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS’s) use of data on nursing home staffing from April 2018 through March 2019; before the COVID-19 pandemic. They also noted recent CMS actions through December 2020. Since November 2016, CMS has required nursing homes to submit payroll-based staffing data, including data on nurses and …

Improving Patient Safety – Communication

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Featured

Despite the challenges faced this year and an emphasis on promoting physical distance, publications in 2020 have demonstrated that persistent efforts continue to evaluate and improve health care communication. Some of these efforts have been in direct response to changes imposed by the COVID pandemic. Moving forward, specific areas and considerations identified in the literature underscore the need for future …

Vaccine Allergies

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, News

For patients who are allergic to mRNA COVID-19 vaccines may be eligible to receive the Johnson & Johns/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine, CDC staff said. While the CDC emphasized that the mRNA vaccines are not interchangeable with Johnson & Johnson’s viral vector vaccine, as the safety and efficacy of a mixed product series have yet to be evaluated, patients may receive the …

National Tragedy: COVID-19 in the Nation’s Nursing Homes

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Featured

At the Senate Finance Committee Hearing held on Wednesday, March 16, 2021, staff members and operators were interviewed regarding how facilities managed the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of the interviews were disturbing and indicated that many facilities struggled with staffing, PPE, resident deaths, the spread of infection, etc. None of this is news to those of us who have lived it …

AstraZeneca Response

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Featured, News

Following a recent concern raised around thrombotic events, AstraZeneca issued a press release to offer its reassurance on the safety of its COVID-19 vaccine based on clear scientific evidence. Safety is of paramount importance and the company is continually monitoring the safety of its vaccine. A careful review of all available safety data of more than 17 million people vaccinated …

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Burn Rate Calculator

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Featured

The CDC released an updated PPE Burn Rate Calculator with the following instructions for use: The Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Burn Rate Calculator (Version 2) excel icon[XLS – 2 MB] is a spreadsheet-based model that will help healthcare facilities plan and optimize the use of PPE for response to COVID-19. Non-healthcare facilities such as correctional facilities may also find this tool useful. To …