Combating the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19): Week of March 22

MHA Covid-19 update

MHA COVID-19 UpdateThe MHA continues to keep members apprised of pandemic-related developments affecting hospitals through email updates and the MHA Coronavirus webpage. Important updates are outlined below.

MHA News Release Urges Vigilance as COVID-19 Cases, Hospitalizations Rise

The MHA issued a news release March 24 regarding the increase in hospitalization rates across Michigan and the positive impact vaccines are having on preventing hospitalization in older adults. The MHA urged residents to help prevent a spring surge of COVID-19 by ensuring they follow recommended preventive measures.

The news release generated significant statewide and national media coverage (see related article), including social media. Members may receive additional inquiries about the surge</strong>; those who would like to review the association’s talking points on this topic should contact Ruthanne Sudderth at the MHA.

Vaccine Allocation to Increase

The state indicated March 26 that approximately 600,000 vaccines will come into Michigan during the week of March 29, marking an increase over the previous two weeks. That number includes the state’s supply and those vaccines being sent directly by the federal government to retail pharmacies, federally qualified health centers and the Ford Field mass vaccination site that opened March 24. As of March 25, Michigan providers had administered more than 3.8 million vaccine doses and fully vaccinated more than 1.4 million Michigan residents — or nearly 18% of the eligible adult population. Members with vaccine questions may contact Ruthanne Sudderth at the MHA.

Medicaid Payment for Vaccine Administration to Increase to Medicare Rates

As previously reported, the Biden administration March 15 updated Medicare rates for vaccine administration, increasing them to $40 per dose of each of the currently available vaccines.

A final policy issued by the Medical Services Administration in December stipulates that Medicaid fee-for-service (FFS) and managed care payment rates for COVID-19 vaccine administration services will equal the Medicare rates for equivalent services. All Medicaid reimbursement rates will be reviewed and updated as applicable and are available on the MDHHS webpage for Medicaid providers by clicking on Billing & Reimbursement and Provider Specific Information.

The MSA also issued concurrent proposed and final policies indicating that the vaccine cost for MI Health Link beneficiaries will be covered by the Medicare FFS program during calendar years 2020 and 2021. Members with questions should contact Vickie Kunz at the MHA.

Additional information on the COVID-19 pandemic is available to members on the MHA Community Site and the MHA COVID-19 webpage. Questions on COVID-19 and infectious disease response strategies may be directed to the MDHHS Community Health Emergency Coordination Center (CHECC).