Follow up from the ME CDC/DHHS March LTC Medical Directors & Clinicians Call

Last week, the ME CDC and DHHS hosted its recent COVID 19 call for LTC Medical Directors & Clinicians. Below are some follow-up answers in response to questions asked during the call. 

Q1.  What is currently required for COVID reporting from LTC facilities?
Answer:  COVID-19 is still a notifiable condition so all tests need to be reported.  After the federal Public Health Emergency expires on  May 11, facilities will no longer be required to report negative tests, but facilities will still need to report positive Point Of Care and molecular tests.  Tests performed at home are not reportable.  
Note that LTCs that report individual patient test results into NHSN already meet this reporting requirement and they do have  not need to separately report COVID results directly to ME CDC as they get these data from NHSN, unless they report only aggregate data to NHSN, in which case they would still need to report individual patient data to ME CDC as well.
Q2.  Can LTC facilities still get supplies from HETL for COVID-19 outbreak testing?
Answer:  HETL is still an option for assisting facilities with outbreak testing.  They don't have large quantities of supplies on hand, but they are still able to conduct the lab testing, and are willing to provide what supplies they might have.  For questions, contact HETL at tel. (207) 287-2727. 
Q3: Can you tell us what are the specific requirements for REDcap reporting?  
Answer: REDCap reporting is available for anyone who does testing with a CLIA license or a CLIA waiver.  It is intended to eliminate the need to fax a paper report, so any facility who does testing that isn't already connected electronically through Electronic Laboratory Reporting (ELRs) can use REDCap.  There isn't a restriction as to who can use the system, but REDCap should only be used to report tests actually done at the facility or office.  Home based tests are not reportable and shouldn't be entered into REDCap.  The requirements for reporting are the same for all notifiable conditions, and for COVID-19 we request that facilities continue to report the AOEs.  These questions help us prioritize investigations, and identify hospitalizations and outbreaks.

Additionally, they are now postponing the quarterly schedule of these calls until further notice. 

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