Official guidance and best practices change rapidly as the COVID-19 outbreak continues to evolve. APTA is curating critical advice from trusted sources such as the CDC.
Information is added hourly, daily. Please continue to check back:
As of 3/18/2020:
APTA Statement on Patient Care and Practice Management During COVID-19 Outbreak (March 17, 2020)
As actions are taken across the country to reduce the spread of COVID-19, a virus that spreads easily from close contact, APTA encourages physical therapists to use their professional judgment to determine when, where, and how to provide care, with the understanding this is not the optimal environment for care, for anyone involved.
Telehealth in Physical Therapy In Light of COVID-19 (March 16, 2020)
The use of telehealth is one approach that can help keep both patients and providers safe, but PTs and PTAs need to understand the current regulatory and payer telehealth landscape to decide whether telehealth is right — or even a possibility — for them. (And be sure to tell Congress to waive restrictions on the use of telehealth!)
National Health Emergency Triggers CMS Waivers for Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP (March 16, 2020)
The "blanket waiver" system now in effect eases a wide range of requirements, but CMS still won't reimburse for telehealth by PTs. Take action!
CMS Moves to Allow Digital Communications by PTs (March 17, 2020)
The new regulatory waivers will allow PTs, OTs, and SLPs to engage in patient-initiated "e-visits" for purposes of assessment and management services.
Coronavirus Update: March 17, 2020 (March 17, 2020)
APTA provides a statement, resources, and guidance; CMS allows limited digital services by PTs; the CDC says gatherings should be fewer than 50 people, and more.
CDC Information and Resources (updated frequently)
Includes information for providers including infection control and preventing transmission in health care settings, guidance for clinical and home care, contact information for local and state health departments, and more; plus information for facilities, families, schools, communities, and businesses.
CMS Issues COVID-19 Guidance on Infection Control, Protective Equipment (March 11, 2020)
The ever-growing list of resources from CMS includes guidance related to particular settings including hospice, SNFs, and home health.
CMS Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention of COVID-19 in Nursing Homes (March 13, 2020)
CMS is providing additional guidance to nursing homes to help them improve their infection control and prevention practices to prevent the transmission of COVID-19, including revised guidance for visitation.
Novel Coronavirus: A Wake-up Call for Best Practices in Preventing Pathogen Transmission (March 10, 2020
In addition to taking precautions to avoid aerosolization (the production of airborne particles containing an infectious virus or bacteria), we must disinfect surfaces touched by infected people. Thus, in physical therapy clinics, in anticipation of future patients being infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, we must think holistically in terms of clinic disinfection and protection.
APTA Events and Operations
In an effort to reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), effective March 11, 2020, APTA is suspending in-person meetings and APTA business travel by staff or members through April 15, 2020. This includes the Federal Advocacy Forum in Washington, DC.
APTA has not made any decisions about events occurring after April 15, 2020, including the House of Delegates and NEXT Conference & Exposition in June. We intend to continue to monitor the situation and announce a decision about those events by April 20, 2020.
APTA will contact members affected by any suspended in-person events to share any related details, including information about registration refunds or the potential for replacement virtual meetings, as appropriate.
This decision by APTA national does not dictate the status of activities hosted by APTA chapters and sections.
We will continue to monitor the developments around the spread of coronavirus. As with all public health situations, we primarily rely on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, and the U.S. Office of the Surgeon General for the best information and preventive strategies.
If you are registered for an APTA event beyond April 15, 2020, and don't want to attend due to coronavirus, contact APTA member services and you will be given a refund. (For quickest service, email email@example.com with the name of the event and the reason for your cancellation. If you have any other questions, please contact us.)
We will continue to update this page if there are further changes to APTA's events and operations.