The demand for convalescent plasma has drastically increased since it appears to be helpful in treating patients currently hospitalized with COVID-19. If you or someone you know has recovered from COVID-19, you can consider donating by visiting www.DonatingPlasma.org.
Today, an appropriations amendment I offered to improve domestic plasma processes and capabilities was adopted with unanimous support. This investment in our nation’s plasma production is critical, especially in light of this pandemic.
National Updates The Consumer Technology Association formed a Public Health Tech Initiative with health care and technology leaders to evaluate the use of technology in dealing with this pandemic and to make recommendations for future public health emergencies.
The Food and Drug Administration posted an updated template for commercial manufacturers to help facilitate the preparation and submission of emergency use authorization requests for COVID-19 diagnostic tests that can be performed entirely outside of a laboratory, such as at home or in schools.
National Institutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins published an article on COVID-19’s effect on child and maternal health.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that payment is available to health care providers performing COVID-19 tests to counsel patients about the importance of self-isolation after they are tested and prior to the onset of symptoms.
Additionally, CMS will implement procedure codes, effective August 1, to allow Medicare and other insurers to identify the use of the therapeutics remdesivir and convalescent plasma for treating hospital in-patients with COVID-19.