Protecting You and Your Staff
Equally as important as taking care of your patients, you also need to take the proper precautions for you and your staff. For updated CDC infection control recommendations as of July 9, 2020, please click here. The CDC is again your best resource for this type of information. However, please find a quick guide below:
- For stress relief services for Physicians and other health care providers, the Physician Support Line provides free counseling to Doctors facing challenges during the pandemic. It is a “national, free, and confidential support line service made up of 600+ volunteer psychiatrists, joined together in the determined hope to provide peer support for our physician colleagues as we all navigate the COVID-19 epidemic," as described on their web site.
- The support line can be reached at 1-888-409-0141. Physicians in Maryland are reminded that stress or other issues can also be addressed by appointment through the Maryland Physicians Health Program, at 410-962-5580 or 800-992-7010.
- Consider cross-training staff for all essential practice and clinical functions.
- Prepare for Staff Illness, absences and/or need to quarantine. Practices should plan for an increased absenteeism rate. You may want to consider establishing a relationship with temporary staffing agencies to help fill unexpected absences.
Define appropriate and optimal use of limited Personal Protective
Equipment (PPE), review the proper technique with staff for putting on
and taking off PPE, and actively monitor PPE supply.
- For appropriate and optimal use, find guidance here
- For proper technique, find guidance here (you may wish to print this out and post it throughout the practice for your staff)
- For help securing PPE for your practice, consult the Maryland Manufacturing Network website here.
- For a summary on guidance from the CDC on how to protect office staff from exposure to COVID-19, please click here.
- Families First Coronavirus Response Act – recently, the United States federal government enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (The Act). The Act requires employers with fewer than 500 employees to provide paid leave to employees who are impacted by COVID-19 and will offer tax credits to employers that do so. The law will take effect on April 1, 2020. For more information, go to:
CARES Act Provider Relief Fund – The President and Congress recently
enacted legislation to support healthcare providers fighting the
COVID-19 pandemic. On March 27, 2020 the President signed the
bipartisan CARES Act that provides $100 billion in relief funds to
hospitals and other healthcare providers on the front lines of the
coronavirus response. This funding will be used to support
healthcare-related expenses or lost revenue attributed to COVID-19.
- For more information on whether you and your practice qualify for relief funds, please consult HHS’s website here.
For an informational video from MedChi on how medical practices should handle healthcare workers who are exposed to COVID-19, click here.
For a free collection of articles by The New England Journal of Medicine on how organizations across the world have responded to the pandemic, click here.
Don’t throw the customer experience and service side out the window. During
this period of uncertainty, the need for compassion and understanding has
never been more important. Don’t forget the human side for both your
patients and staff.
Since this is a time of stress for many, please use these resources to find ways to cope:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Stress and Coping
- American College of Lifestyle Medicine: Lifestyle Choices to Boost Immunity
Since many Physicians are working from home and using their personal computers, learn ways to ensure your work environment is safe from cyber-threats here.