Trump administration gives hospitals guidelines for resuming elective procedures

A month after announcing that...

Posted: Apr 20, 2020 6:48 PM

A month after announcing that all nonessential health care should be delayed amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Trump administration released recommendations on restarting elective surgeries and procedures.

Resuming these surgeries on an outpatient basis is part of the administration's phase one plan to reopen the country and get Americans back to work. But before phase one can start, a state or region would have to have a downward trajectory of documented and potential coronavirus cases for two weeks and hospitals would have to have a robust testing program in place.

The postponement of elective surgeries has delayed many patients' ability to get needed care and has wreaked havoc on hospital finances, forcing some to furlough employees and cut pay and hours -- even for emergency room doctors in areas without many cases.

Congress set aside $100 billion for hospitals and health care providers to make up for lost revenue and cover additional expenses to combat the outbreak as part of its $2 trillion relief package. Lawmakers are looking at funneling billions more to the sector in their next bill.

Restarting elective procedures will be determined on a state and local basis, and hospitals must meet certain criteria, said Seema Verma, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Facilities must evaluate and prioritize what care should be given, screen staff and patients for symptoms, including temperature checks, and have sufficient personal protective equipment and other supplies on hand. Social distancing and sanitizing protocols should be in place.

Also, when adequate testing capability is established, patients should be tested before care and staff should be regularly screened by lab tests.

And conditions should be continuously evaluated since these procedures may have to halt if a surge in coronavirus cases takes place.

The recommendations are generally in line with a road map released last week by four medical industry groups, including the American Hospital Association. It also stressed the importance of having a sustained reduction in cases, an adequate supply of staff, supplies and beds, availability of testing and the prioritization of cases, including cancer and transplants.

The governors of several states, including Texas, Alaska, Oklahoma and West Virginia, have recently announced the loosening of restrictions on elective surgeries as part of the effort to reopen their states.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2111162

Reported Deaths: 53597
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings28073410464
Queens2774519962
Suffolk2011393400
Nassau1837273176
Bronx1836646583
New York1383674505
Westchester1297062291
Erie896031809
Richmond750301840
Monroe690351111
Orange48330843
Rockland46958963
Onondaga38960677
Dutchess29478445
Albany24708356
Oneida22633516
Niagara20045374
Broome18630366
Saratoga15379168
Ulster13915257
Schenectady13207205
Rensselaer11232143
Putnam1062192
Chautauqua8957145
Chemung7772136
Oswego762692
Ontario740893
Steuben6957145
Sullivan667676
St. Lawrence664497
Cayuga633892
Jefferson614968
Wayne578370
Cattaraugus572391
Genesee5436124
Herkimer5191109
Clinton483733
Madison456489
Livingston452360
Fulton442391
Tompkins435052
Montgomery4254127
Columbia4065104
Cortland392763
Tioga383163
Warren366057
Wyoming358353
Allegany355887
Chenango350476
Otsego346347
Greene340379
Washington316255
Orleans312083
Lewis281036
Franklin256312
Delaware238538
Seneca201156
Schoharie169217
Essex159326
Yates117926
Schuyler108014
Hamilton3132
Unassigned9717
Out of NY0250
Utica
Mostly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 61°
Oneonta
Partly Cloudy
58° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 58°
Herkimer
Partly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 61°
Old Forge
Mostly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 61°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Senior Send-Off brought to you by Herkimer College
18 Facets of Summer Photo Contest brought to you by Herkimer Diamond Mines
Looking for work or looking to hire? Check out the WKTV Job Fair!
Alivana Ready for Summer Giveaway
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve