NEW JERSEY: Get the Latest on OSHA ETS for Occupational Exposure to COVID and Legislative Updates at Chapter Meeting
The HCAOA New Jersey State Chapter will hold a virtual meeting on Wednesday, September 22 from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m. The meeting agenda includes federal and legislative updates, as well as COVID-19 information regarding vaccine mandates and the OSHA Emergency Temporary Standard.
Several States Issue COVID Vaccine Mandates: HCAOA Chapters Seeking Clarification on Requirements for Home Care
Several states have recently announced COVID-19 vaccine mandates for health care workers, and HCAOA and state chapters are working with state officials to clarify how these mandates impact home care. For example, mandates in Washington, California, and New York do not include home care in some settings, while the order in New Jersey does include home care.
Governor Murphy issued Executive Order (“EO”) No. 252, which requires employees working in certain “covered settings” to be vaccinated or be tested for COVID-19 “at minimum one to two times weekly.” The EO lists two classes of covered settings: Health Care Facilities and High-Risk Congregate Settings. Registered Health Care Service Firms (HCSF) are included in the definition of “Health Care Facilities” and therefore these mandates apply to all HCSFs and their caregivers, nurses and internal staff. The terms of the EO go into effect on September 7, 2021.
HCAOA’s state chapters continue to monitor states’ legislative and regulatory actions. Here’s a quick listing of the most recent home care happenings around the country.
Acting in preparation of the potential extension of the federal tax deadline, Senator Paul Sarlo, the chairman of the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee, introduced legislation (S-3564) that would extend the filing and payment deadline for state taxes as well. Now that the American Rescue Plan was signed by President Biden, the IRS could be acting to extend the April 15 deadline to May 15, 2021 and New Jersey should be prepared to align the schedules, Senator Sarlo said. Senator Sarlo also expressed concern about senior citizens who are most at risk from COVID-19, and often require assistance in preparing their returns and may not have access to or familiarity with internet services.
HCAOA’s newest Associate Member, the National Institute for Home Care Accreditation, Inc. (NIHCA) is a national accrediting organization that is focused on promoting competence, professionalism, and ethics to ensure the public trust. This is accomplished by setting standards and qualifications for the delivery of safe essential private duty home care services. The accreditation process strengthens the provider’s credibility and reputation as an accredited organization and makes identifying safe, trusted, and competent care easy.
The Home Health Services Association of New Jersey (HHSANJ) has joined HCAOA as a State Chapter. HHSANJ has worked to address the needs of New Jersey’s health care service firms, including private pay and Medicaid providers.
Last week, the New Jersey Department of Health announced a partnership with Rite Aid to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to home care and hospice staff. Rite Aid will provide end-to-end management of the process, including cold chain management, on-site vaccinations, and fulfillment of reporting requirements, to facilitate safe vaccination of these healthcare workers.
NEW JERSEY: New Jersey Sets Mandatory COVID-19 Health and Safety Standards Applicable to All Employers, Legalizes Recreational Marijuana
Effective last week, all employers operating in New Jersey are required to comply with a number of COVID-19-related mandatory health and safety standards. With the signing of Executive Order 192 (EO192), Gov. Phil Murphy consolidated a hodgepodge of requirements directed at specific industries (e.g., construction, manufacturing, retail) and guidance documents, and placed all New Jersey employers on notice, regardless of industry, that they will be required to institute and enforce COVID-19 safety protocols.
HCAOA is once again partnering with the Home Health Services Association of New Jersey to offer a legislative and regulatory update for home care providers in the state on Wednesday, September 30 at 2:00 p.m. The webinar will be led by HCAOA Executive Director Vicki Hoak and HHSANJ President Adam Blecker, and will include updates from Dennis F. Marco, Managing Partner, Hamilton Public Affairs, LLC, and Joseph Maddaloni, Jr., Esq., Schenck Price Smith & King LLP. Click here to register.