Resources to Address Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Hospice and palliative care professionals play an essential role in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. AAHPM is working with our partners to ensure that our colleagues have access to the tools, networks and flexibility they need during this crisis to support the best quality of life for people with serious illness and their families and maintain their own safety and well-being.
To help you respond to COVID-19 in your community, we have compiled resources, tools and guidance for professionals in a range of roles and settings.
American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) Statement on Vaccinations - September 23, 2021
The vaccines now available and recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are safe and effective at reducing COVID-19 infections, complications, and death and represent a critical intervention for bringing the public health crisis under control. As hospice and palliative care professionals, AAHPM members care for people with serious illness who are particularly susceptible to severe complications and death from COVID-19 infection, and we bear a professional responsibility to do all we can to prevent unnecessary suffering by fully vaccinating all healthcare workers who participate in their care. AAHPM provides the following guidance regarding vaccination:
- All public health actions and recommendations should be guided by the best available scientific evidence and prioritize the safety and well-being of patients, families, and healthcare workers.
- Physicians and other healthcare professionals have a duty to provide factual information and make evidence-based recommendations in the interest of public health.
- AAHPM supports all efforts to eliminate healthcare disparities – both nationally and globally – in the prevention, treatment, and outcomes of COVID-19 by race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic status, or disability and to ensure that marginalized communities are provided with full access to vaccination and not inequitably disadvantaged by mandates.
- AAHPM recognizes that vaccination mandates may be personally challenging for some healthcare workers and could have the unintended consequence of worsening already critical workforce shortages, especially in hospice and palliative care. Every effort must be made to build trust, address concerns, and encourage healthcare workers to accept vaccination and remain in the workforce.
- Hospice and palliative care professionals are essential healthcare workers and must have full access to vaccinations in addition to COVID-19 testing and proper personal protective equipment.
- AAHPM recommends full COVID-19 vaccination for all adults, including those who are home-bound or receiving hospice or palliative care, provided their condition would allow them to achieve the benefit of developing immunity.
- AAHPM recommends full COVID-19 vaccination for all children and adolescents 12 years of age and older in addition to other childhood immunizations and recognizes that research is currently underway to determine the safety and efficacy of the vaccine for children under 12 years old.
- AAHPM recognizes legitimate medical and religious exceptions to vaccination and considers them to be rare.
- AAHPM supports the federal government’s action to mandate COVID-19 vaccination of healthcare workers in all federally funded facilities and urges employers and state and local agencies to support vaccination mandates for all healthcare workers and volunteers in all settings, including hospice, home health, and community-based palliative care.
AAHPM Connect – AAHPM members have access to over 40 professional communities to share information, resources, questions, and support
NHPCO COVID-19 Updates – Sign up to receive daily email updates from the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
Twitter – Follow the hashtags #COVID19 for general pandemic information, #pallicovid for the palliative response, and #pedpccovid for the pediatric palliative response
PC-FACS - read the COVID-19 edition of AAHPM's PC-FACS
U.S. and Global Agency COVID-19 Resources
Fever at the End of Life - Dr. Ellissa Tiller, AAHPM member and Fellow, speaks on the differential diagnosis of fever and likelihood of COVID-19 in hospice and palliative care patients
COVID-Ready Communication Skills - A playbook of communication tips from VitalTalk
Illustrated COVID-19 Communication Aids - Dr. Nathan Gray's artistic rendering of the VitalTalk playbook from the BMJ
Serious Illness Care Program COVID-19 Response Toolkit - Communication tools for multiple settings from Adriadne Labs
NHPCO Shared Decision-Making Tool - A guide for shared decision-making including COVID-19 prognosis from the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
CAPC COVID-19 Toolkit - Guides to symptom management, communication and more from the Center to Advance Palliative Care
Palliative Care Skills in the Setting of COVID-19 - Free on-demand webinars from the University of Chicago
AMA COVID-19 Resource Center for Physicians - Latest news and resources from the American Medical Association
AAFP COVID-19 Resources for Family Physicians - Latest news and resources from the American Academy of Family Physicians
SCCM Critical Care for Non-ICU Clinicians - Complementary online training from the Society of Critical Care Medicine
Working from Home During the COVID-19 Pandemic - Guidance on protecting a remote work environment from cyber criminals, provided by the American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association
COVID-19 Volunteer Guide for Health Care Professionals – Resources for health care professionals interested in volunteering in COVID-19 hotspots from the American Medical Association
AAMC Coronavirus Resource Hub – Guidance from the Association of American Medical Colleges
ACGME COVID-19 Resources – Guidance from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education
NRMP COVID-19 FAQ – Frequently asked questions from the National Resident Matching Program
Fellowship Directors HPM Training COVID-19 Resources – For AAHPM members only via AAHPM Connect
NIH COVID-19 Resources – Guidance and research opportunities from the National Institutes of Health
JPSM Call for COVID-19 Papers – Call for fast track manuscripts from the Journal of Pain and Symptom Management
PCQC COVID-19 Case Report – Case reports for COVID-19 patients receiving palliative care may be submitted to the Palliative Care Quality Collaborative (open to all)
For Team and Self Care
SCC Cultivating Professional Resilience – Reflections on professional well-being from the Supportive Care Coalition
Schwartz Center Resources for Coping with COVID-19 – Tips to support health care professionals during unprecedented times
NAM Clinician Well-being Knowledge Hub – Resources from the National Academy of Medicine’s Action Collaborative on Clinician Well-being and Resilience
HHS/CMS Actions to Expand Telehealth During the Pandemic
- Temporary Expansion of Medicare Telehealth Benefits – CMS Fact Sheet, FAQs
- OIG Eases HIPAA Rules Enforcement for Telehealth Services - Notification, FAQs
- OIG Allows Providers to Reduce or Waive Beneficiary Cost-Sharing for Telehealth Visits - Policy Statement, Fact Sheet, FAQs
- Guidance on Medicaid Coverage of Telehealth Services
AMA Quick Guide to Telemedicine – Step-by-step guides to implement telemedicine from the American Medical Association
Delivery of Effective Telehealth, Visit Outline, Techniques to Respond to Emotion – Palliative telehealth tools from the PCORI REACH PC trial shared by faculty from Massachusetts General Hospital via Pallimed
CCHR COVID-19 Telehealth Coverage Policies – Updates on federal and state telehealth coverage policies from the Center for Connected Health Policy
ACC State Telehealth and Licensure Expansion COVID-19 Dashboard – Updates on state telehealth and licensing waivers from the Alliance for Connected Care
NHPCO Ethical Framework for Decision-Making in Hospice and Palliative Care – Guidance on ethical decision-making from the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
The Hastings Center Ethical Framework– Ethical framework for health care institutions and guidelines for institutional ethics services responding to the pandemic
Palliating a Pandemic: "All Patients Must Be Cared For" – A JPSM (2010) article by James Downar and Dori Seccareccia
Resources from Partnering Organizations
Please visit the National Coalition for Hospice and Palliative Care for additional resources from various partner organizations.
Review AAHPM's Advocacy Updates to learn how the Academy is promoting policies that will remove barriers to timely, safe patient care and protect clinicians on the front line of the COVID-19 epidemic, and track key Policy Developments at the state and federal levels.