FEMA issues guidance on hospital generator funding

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) released guidance intended to streamline the application process for hospital generator projects under its Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA) Program. The guidance establishes precalculated benefit values for certain hospital generator projects. Projects that are eligible for funding under FEMA’s HMA programs must demonstrate cost-effectiveness. FEMA has developed several methodologies that applicants and subapplicants may use to demonstrate cost-effectiveness. States, communities, tribes and territories can apply through Jan. 28 for over $1 billion in hazard mitigation assistance for various projects.

CDC invests $2.1 billion to fight infectious diseases

The Biden administration, working through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is investing $2.1 billion of American Rescue Plan funding to strengthen and equip state, local and territorial public health departments and other partner organizations with the resources needed to better fight infections in U.S. health care facilities, including COVID-19 and other known and emerging infectious diseases. The funding includes provisions to expand Project Firstline, a collaborative initiative between the CDC, the American Hospital Association and other organizations to design and implement infection prevention and control training and education to front-line health care staff.

AAAHC to mandate COVID-19 vaccination for surveyors

The Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC) board of directors and executive leadership team have adopted a new COVID-19 vaccination requirement for its community of surveyors. Effective Oct. 15, all AAAHC surveyors — whose front-line role in the accreditation process may place them at greater risk of COVID-19 infection — must comply with this new guidance and have received either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The decision aligns AAAHC with many of the health care organizations it serves, including facilities that receive Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement. AAAHC says the majority of its surveyors were already fully vaccinated when the mandate was put in place. The requirement will allow surveyors to continuously provide support.

HHS releases new health care preparedness resources

The Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) recently released several new emergency preparedness resources. Collected by ASPR’s Technical Resources, Assistance Center and Information Exchange, the topics range from leadership innovations during COVID-19 to considerations for health care facilities caring for Afghan evacuees. New resources include The Effect of COVID-19 on the Healthcare Incident Command System tip sheet, Innovations in COVID-19 Patient Surge Management tip sheet, Hospital Surge of Patients with Behavioral Health Challenges during COVID-19 tip sheet and more.