Up to 80% of Arizona’s children are not seeing their pediatrician right now, according to findings released by the Arizona chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, or AzAAP. As a result, AzAAP is launching its “Back to the Office” campaign to boost the number of children checking in with their local pediatrician, even if it is done virtually. The American Academy of Pediatrics launched its own “Call Your Pediatrician!” campaign earlier this week.
The outbreak of COVID-19 in Arizona has not only disrupted immunization schedules but also delayed children from receiving the care they need for ongoing health problems. Doctors are seeing flare-ups of asthma, diabetes, and other chronic conditions because of missed visits, says Dr. Sean Elliott, a Tucson pediatrician and member of the academy. Delayed or skipped newborn health checkups, which might include screenings for jaundice and failure to thrive, can pose life-or-death risks for an infant.
Elliott, an infectious-disease specialist, says pediatricians are also seeing an increase in the number of children and teens needing professional help for pandemic-related mental-health problems brought on by stress, fear, and social isolation.
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Key policymakers in both the legislative and executive branches have asked us to help gather important information. Are you a physician who has received federal financial assistance to help keep you or your practice going during these challenging times? Is the aid sufficient? Click here to fill out a short survey so we can get a better picture of the financial circumstances of Arizona physicians during the COVID-19 public health emergency.Read More
Doctors Without Borders confirmed in a statement on Tuesday that the international organization dispatched a team to help the Navajo Nation battle the coronavirus outbreak in a rare mission inside the United States. Nico D’Auterive, spokesperson for Doctors Without Borders, says that the organization is “focused on providing technical guidance to health care facilities and organizations to assist with infection prevention and control.” The nine-person team, including two physicians and three nurses, arrived in the Navajo Nation in April and plans to stay until sometime in June. The University of California, San Francisco also announced that seven physicians and 14 nurses would be sent to the Navajo Nation to assist in the tribe’s fight against the virus.
The Navajo Nation, which consists of about 170,000 people, has more confirmed COVID-19 cases per capita than any state in the U.S. with about 1,786 cases per 100,000 people. It also has a documented shortage of both medical professionals and ICU beds. The CARES Act, which President Trump signed into law on March 27, allocated $8 billion in relief funding to tribes across the country, including $600 million to the Navajo Nation. However, residents claim that the infrastructure of the local health care system is so weak that organizations like Doctors Without Borders will need to step in to distribute much-needed aid and supplies.
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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is extending the deadline for attestation & acceptance of the Terms and Conditions for Provider Relief Fund payments to physicians. When originally enacted, the deadline was 30 days, but HHS is now increasing that limit to 45 days. For example, if you received a payment on April 15, your original deadline of May 14 would be extended to May 28. These payments are part of the $50 billion CARES Act allocation across the healthcare system to physicians, clinics, and hospitals that bill Medicare.
If you would like additional information about the Provider Relief Fund or for help determining if you’re eligible for payments, click here.Read More
Governor Doug Ducey issued an Executive Order allowing elective surgeries to resume on May 1.
The prohibition against elective surgeries was the right thing to do in light of the COVID-19 emergency, but undoubtedly created real hardships for many Arizona physicians and their patients. ArMA is pleased that Governor Ducey took responsible action to address the situation, and provided substantial input into the decision. It was satisfying to see that many aspects of the Executive Order followed the recommendations provided by ArMA.Read More
We are proud to launch ArMPAC’s new site. ArMPAC is a nonpartisan effort that is a critical part of ArMA’s advocacy mission. ArMPAC is physician-led by a Board of Directors that vet and support viable pro-physician candidates for office. Healthcare policymaking has become more complex and challenging…Read More