Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Happy Holidays from AHCA/NCAL!


CMS COVID-19 Infection Control for Psychiatric and ICFs/IID

On December 17, 2020, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a memo (QSO-21-07-Psych Hospital, PRTF & ICF/IID) impacting psychiatric hospitals, Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facilities (PRTFs) and Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICFs/IID).  CMS noted in the summary of the memo that the Agency is “committed to taking critical steps to protect all Americans including those with intellectual and developmental disabilities to ensure America’s health care facilities are prepared to respond to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency (PHE).  CMS is providing guidance to these providers to improve their infection control and prevention practices, in part, to prevent or lessen the need for use of seclusion and restraint as an infection control intervention. 

All Psychiatric hospitals, PRTFs and ICF/IIDs should monitor the CDC website for information and resources, and contact the local health department, when necessary (CDC Resources for Health Care Facilities: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019- ncov/healthcare-facilities/index.html).”  You can read the full memo here.

AHCA/NCAL Launches Vaccination Campaign

AHCA/NCAL launched a new #GetVaccinated campaign​ to encourage long term care staff and residents to get the COVID-19 vaccine​​. A communications toolkit with various materials ​have been created for providers and state affiliates to help communicate about the importance of vaccination as well as highlight progress.

The​ digital toolkit includes a checklist of ideas, template letters to use with stakeholders, sample social media, and media prep material. AHCA/NCAL will continue to update these materials and as new ones as needed, so be sure to check back for the latest resources!​

2021 AHCA NCAL National Quality Award Deadline Next Month

2021 Bronze, Silver and Gold Quality Award applicants are encouraged to access free resources to help with a smooth writing and submission process.The Criteria Series are videos that applicants can access for free that cover application categories and technical writing for each award level.

Completing a successful application takes time to prepare. Don't wait. Gather your team and work on your application today!  

All applications and application fees must be submitted in the Quality Award portal by 8 pm Eastern on January 28, 2021. Late applications and payments will not be accepted.

ICF/IID Reports

AHCA's Research Department has released the following June 2020 updates for use by AHCA/NCAL members (Login Required):

If you have any questions relating to these reports, which include important ICF/IID state and national data, please contact AHCA’s Research Director, Kiran Sreenivas.

We Need You for Our Social Media Initiative

AHCA/NCAL began a social media advocacy initiative last year and is encouraging all members to get involved.  The effort focuses on improving the overall image of the post-acute and long term care profession by sharing positive stories and pushing back on pieces that attempt to tie all providers to isolated negative events.

AHCA/NCAL will be sending interested members tips for getting more involved on social media, best practices for posting content, sample posts, and a roundup of positive stories about the profession on a regular basis. Individuals who want to get involved should email socialmedia@ahca.org to get on the mailing list.

The campaign also will include a rapid response to stories that are unfairly negative about the profession or do not accurately portray the reality of post-acute and long term care.  AHCA/NCAL hopes to build on these successes as the year continues. With thousands of buildings nationwide who touch the lives of millions of people, there is the chance to seriously affect the way the profession is viewed and treated by lawmakers and the media.


Visit the AHCA/NCAL Coronavirus website daily for the latest information that we have to share with long term care providers about COVID-19.  As concerns arise with the emerging coronavirus, officially named COVID-19, we are working nationally with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to ensure our long term care communities receive necessary supplies and guidance to prevent the spread of this disease.