Provider Alert! THSteps Medical and Dental Checkups during COVID-19

Provider Alert! THSteps Medical and Dental Checkups during COVID-19

Attention: Primary Care Providers
Effective Date: June 26, 2020  

The content in this message will remain in effect throughout the COVID-19 Disaster Declaration period as announced by the office of the Texas Governor, Greg Abbott. COVID-19 Utilization Management Procedure and provider alerts can be found here: http://www.thecheckup.org/provider-alerts/

Providers should monitor the Texas Children’s Health Plan (TCHP) Provider Portal regularly for alerts and updates associated to the COVID-19 event.  TCHP reserves the right to update and/or change this information without prior notice due to the evolving nature of the COVID-19 event.

Call to action: TCHP aligns with the guidance from Health and Human Services Commissions’ (HHSC) regarding THSteps medical and dental checkups. To limit exposure to COVID-19 and allow providers to focus on acute care, HHSC encourages medical and dental providers to make decisions on adjusting clinical operations based on professional medical judgement and/or guidance from professional medical and dental authorities. Consideration for the exposure risk of COVID- 19 at the local and community level should be a decision factor.

How this impacts providers: Operational changes a provider may want to consider in their daily office operations may include the following:

  • Postponing certain checkups
  • Limiting checkups to certain times of day
  • Dedicating specific exam rooms for sick and well visits
  • Prioritizing visits for younger patients, especially those due for routine vaccines

Department of Family and Protective Services exam information:

Providers are encouraged to continue providing in-person medical exams for children entering the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) conservatorship (3-day exam). This is an opportunity to have a child new to DFPS conservatorship seen by a health care provider. These medical visits are very important for the new caregiver to have information about the child’s health.

Next steps for providers: Providers should adhere to the guidance from HHSC and adjust their practice operations accordingly in order to reduce COVID-19 exposure to patients and their staff.

Resources:
American Academy of Pediatrics

American Dental Association

If you have any questions, please email Provider Network Management at: providerrelations@texaschildrens.org.

For access to all provider alerts, log into:
www.thecheckup.org or www.texaschildrenshealthplan.org/for-providers.

 

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