AAPM&R is Calling for a Comprehensive National Plan to Address the Needs of Millions Suffering from Long COVID

According to two recent publications from the Journal of the American Medical Association, ten to thirty percent of individuals who had COVID-19 reported at least one persistent symptom up to six months after the virus left their bodies. That means 3 to 10 million Americans are experiencing symptoms of Long COVID or Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC), which are varied and ongoing, including neurological challenges, cognitive problems such as brain fog, shortness of breath, fatigue, pain, and mobility issues.

AAPM&R called on President Joe Biden and Congress to gear up for the next coronavirus crisis by preparing and implementing a comprehensive national plan focused on meeting the needs of millions of individuals suffering from the long-term symptoms of COVID-19, and help them regain quality of life and return to being active members of their communities. The plan must include a commitment to three major components:

  • Resources to build necessary infrastructure to meet this crisis
  • Equitable access to care for patients
  • Research to advance medical understanding of Long COVID

PM&R physicians are uniquely qualified to help guide the multidisciplinary effort needed to develop a plan for this crisis. As a specialty, physiatrists are investigators, team leaders and problem solvers. PM&R physicians see the whole patient AND the whole picture of the rehabilitation ecosystem. Physiatrists are exactly what this crisis needs. Learn more about our Multidisciplinary PASC Collaborative, launched in March 2021, which is working on quality improvement initiatives.

AAPM&R Advocacy, Healthcare Collaborations and Partnerships, and Customized Resources to Support PM&R During This Crisis

AAPM&R is working to ensure PM&R is part of the national conversation about healthcare amidst COVID-19 and advocating for the federal support, legislation, regulation relief and resources that physiatrists need now. One way we are doing this is through our partnerships and collaborations with other specialty societies. The Academy continuously works to represent PM&R through these collaborations, and it is through these partnerships that we are able to discuss and share a variety of resources with you that you critically need.

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AAPM&R Supports Reopening the Reporting Period 1 for Provider Relief Fund

Apr 08, 2022

AAPM&R supported a joint letter urging the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to reopen the Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Period 1 reporting window for at least 60 days and engage in a targeted campaign to reach those who did not report through the HRSA PRF Reporting Portal by the November 30, 2021 deadline. This stems from concerns regarding the recoupment of Period 1 funding received, especially for small and rural physician practices who are particularly impacted by the reporting deadline and consequences of recoupment. The letter offers insight into the challenges physicians have faced during the COVID-19 surges, impeding their ability to comply with the deadline:

  • Practices reported they were not contacted about the requirement to report and were thus unaware of the deadline;
  • Medical and administrative staff contracted COVID-19 or were acting as a caregiver and,

therefore, were out of off the office which caused them to miss the reporting deadline; and

  • Staffing challenges and turnover resulted in the practice’s point of contact no longer being

affiliated with the practice.

For more information about PRF reporting, visit the HRSA website.