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Coronavirus - COVID-19 Information

 

 

   

 

 

Breaking News

Archived News

 

Governor Wolf has ordered all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania to close their physical locations as of 8pm on Thursday, March 19, 2020. There are exceptions. Click here to read the Order of the Governor . Click here for a list of Business Classifications .

 

Coronavirus Resources

Many of the National Pharmacy Organizations have created Coronavirus resource pages.  Click the organization below for more information on COVID-19. 

 

NASPA - National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations

NCPA - National Community Pharmacists Association

NACDS - National Association of Chain Drug Associations

APhA - The American Pharmacists Association

Community Pharmacists Best Practices for COVID-19 Response

NCPA offers webinar to answer legal questions about COVID-19.  This webinar covers topics such as Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act - What to do if an employee or owner gets sick?  What PBMs are doing - Infection Control Procedures - What to do it you have to close your pharmacy. Click here to access a recording of the webinar.

ASHP - American Society of Hospital Pharmacists - Coronavirus information.

ASCP - America Society of Consultant Pharmacists

The Partnership for Safe Medicines - Avoid Scams and Counterfeits: Quick Tips to Safely Purchase Medicines Online 

 

FDA Information and Other Resources

 

CDC Updates

  • CDC Infection Control Guidance for Pharmacies: Click here

Surgical Masks and N95 Respirator Information

  • The difference between Surgical masks and respirators  

    VIDEO - Watch the video

    FDA WRITTEN MATERIALS


  • CDC Surgical Masks vs N95 Respirator Infographic. Click here
  • Medical Glove Conservation Strategies: Letter to Health Care Providers.  Click here to read the letter

  • Surgical Mask and Gown Conservation Strategies:  Letter to Health Care Providers.  Click here to read the letter

OSHA Information

Vaccination Information

CDC Guidance to Pharmacies and recommendation on vaccinations. Click here for information 

 

Compounding Information

  • Center for Drug Evaluation and Research issues Compounding Policy Clarification.  Click here for information. 

 

PA Insurance Department Information

Governor Tom Wolf announced that the Pennsylvania Insurance Department, in collaboration with the Department of Health, is submitting for publication a notice to the Pennsylvania Bulletin outlining proactive steps and recommendations for consumers and major health insurers to help mitigate the potential impact of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania. Click here to read the entire notice. Click here to read the bulletin.

 

Forums

To listen to a recording of the PPA's Forum click on the date below. 

 

April 7, 2020

March 31, 2020

 

Sign Up for Alerts

All Pennsylvania residents are encouraged to sign up for AlertPA, a text notification system for health, weather, and other important alerts like COVID-19 updates from commonwealth agencies. Click here to sign up online.

 

Daily COVID-19 Report

For the daily COVID-19 Report, click here and scroll to the bottom of the page.

 

Symptoms and Precautions

Symptoms of the COVID-19 can include fever, cough and shortness of breath. The symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure. Reported illnesses have ranged from people with little to no symptoms to people being severely ill and dying. Individuals most at risk for severe symptoms include elderly and those with pre-existing conditions.

Pennsylvanians are reminded to:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol- based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
  • Cover any coughs or sneezes with your elbow, not your hands.
  • Clean surfaces frequently, such as countertops, light switches, cell phones and other frequently touched areas.
  • Contain if you are sick, you should stay home until you are feeling better.


Pharmacists and Pharmacies

New York Times offers free E-Book - Answers to Your Coronavirus Questions

Click here to access the E-Book. 

 

Provider Alert: CMS Issues Guidance to Ensure Patient Access Amid COVID-19

Dae Y. Lee, Esq., PharmD CPBS and Jesse C. Dresser, Esq report from Frier Levitt, Attorneys at Law that The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a moratorium on March 10, 2020 directing Medicare Advantage Organizations (MAOs), Medicare and Part D Sponsors, Medicare-Medicaid Plans, and consequently, pharmacy providers to remove certain barriers that could hinder patients from receiving healthcare services in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Click here to read the articleClick here to read the moratorium from CMS.

 

Mitigating/Managing staff exposure to novel Coronavirus

In addition to primary care providers and emergency room staff, pharmacy staff (including delivery drivers) are at risk for exposure. As health care professionals, we chose to be on the front lines, remaining accessible but also responsible for mitigating risk of infection to ourselves. This is necessary for both the health of your staff but also to the health of the population we serve that comes into contact with your staff. For guidance on how to minimize risk of staff exposure, click here to access information NCPA has put on their website. Another resource for pharmacy-specific guidance is information that the Arkansas Pharmacists Association developed collaboratively with their State Department of Health, accessible here.

 

Curbside Delivery

Many state officials are calling on pharmacies to offer curbside pick-up as a way to limit contact and stop the spread. If you do not have a drive through or offer home delivery, please consider this option. Please see the example guidance that Sellersville Pharmacy provided their staff and how they set up operations. Click here to see the example guideline notice.

 

FDA Policy for Temporary Compounding of Certain Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizers

Frier Levitt summarizes the FDA policy on compounding - Due to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the current consumer difficulties accessing alcohol-based hand sanitizers, and in response to the many queries concerning compounding these products, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a guidance to communicate its policy. Click here to read the article and summary

 

Additional Helpful Business and Personal links

We have included this link to a western PA company that handles insurance programs. On their website are some helpful tools and information  – including details on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. Click here for more information. 

 

We thank you and recognize all you are doing. Lets let other know too! As you get a chance, send us your photos of being on the front line helping your patients (no identifiable patient photos please for HIPAA reasons and privacy!). Be it in a community pharmacy, in a hospital, or wherever you practice – send us your at work photos. Faculty send us teaching on line – have a little fun with this while showing how important you are to this crisis. We will post on social media and use as fit in other advocacy ways. Email photos to ppa@papharmacists.com.

 

Save the below photos and add them to your social media accounts or pharmacy website to support pharmacy on the front lines.

 

 

               

 

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