Important Legal Guidance Related to COVID-19 image

Distribution: All Providers
Copied: Entire Company
From: Laura Ashpole

Below please find important legal guidance on a few topics impacting your practice during the current COVID-19 outbreak.

Prescribing Controlled Substances Via Telemedicine

Today, the DEA published new guidance making clear that because the Secretary of Health and Human Services has declared COVID-19 a public health emergency, DEA-registered practitioners may issue controlled substance prescriptions to patients for whom they have not conducted an in-person medical evaluation, as long as the prescription is issued for a legitimate medical purpose in the usual course of professional practice by a practitioner engaged in treating the patient via telemedicine. This means that effective immediately you may prescribe clinically indicated Schedule II-V controlled substances to patients you see for an initial evaluation or follow-up visit via telemedicine, regardless of whether you’ve previously seen the patient in-person. As long as COVID-19 remains designated a public health emergency by the Secretary, this exception to the in-person medical evaluation requirement under the Ryan Haight Act applies.

Consent to Telemedicine

Per CA law, consent to telemedicine can be obtained verbally or in writing, as long as the patient’s practitioner documents that consent to telemedicine was obtained. This means that patients are not required to sign our Consent to Telemedicine form before being seen by you via telemedicine and can provide their verbal consent to telemedicine instead, as long as you document this in the patient’s chart.

HIPAA Confidentiality

As a health care provider, you are a mandated reporter of cases or suspected cases of certain diseases, including COVID-19. This means that in the event you learn that a patient of yours has tested positive for COVID-19, you are required by CA law to immediately report this information to the patient’s local health department by phone. In the event you are required to make such a report, please also be sure to complete an incident report form and submit to IncidentReporting@cpsych.com.

If you have any questions regarding the above legal guidance or any other legal questions related to COVID-19, please call or email me directly.

Best,
Laura Ashpole, General Counsel

Managing Children’s Anxiety Amid Our Current Health Crisis

With the COVID-19 outbreak reaching new levels, we are experiencing something that none of us have ever experienced in our lifetimes…We will get through this. We will be stronger, more compassionate and more understanding as a result. We will take care of ourselves, our families and our community.

Community Psychiatry Serves Patients in California Via Telemedicine Amid COVID-19 Health Emergency (Press Release)

Community Psychiatry Serves Patients in California Via Telemedicine Amid COVID-19 Health Emergency New federal guidance approves telemedicine to prescribe medication for legitimate medical purpose during health crisis   SACRAMENTO, Calif …

Tips for Managing Anxiety and Stress during the Coronavirus Outbreak

By: Dr. Priyanka, Medical Director, Community Psychiatry The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is undoubtedly stressful and can trigger anxiety. The daily reminders and constant updates in the news …