As more reports come in on the spread of coronavirus COVID-19, TMA has convened a task force of public health experts to help Texas physicians prepare for the next phase. We’ve started by compiling all the news and information you need right now on our online resource center. Bookmark that page as we will update it continually.
COVID-19 Resource Center
2020 has been a hard year. The COVID-19 pandemic has killed our loved ones, made many Texans sick, and upended our lives. Now we’re facing another big threat – flu season.
Each year in the United States, the influenza (flu) virus kills or hospitalizes thousands of people and makes millions sick.
Our physicians and other health care professionals remain busy caring for COVID-19 patients. They don’t want to start seeing lots of flu patients too. That could stretch our health care system to the breaking point. They want you to get the care you need, when you need it.
Nobody’s certain when the first COVID-19 vaccines will be available, but you can take important steps now to make sure you’re ready to vaccinate patients quickly once the shots arrive, state health leaders said this week.
The federal Health and Human Services (HHS) Department recently began accepting applications for a new round of emergency funding for physicians and practices affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated its How COVID-19 Spreads guidance to include the potential for airborne spread of the virus.
“COVID-19 is here, but so is the flu.”
That is the message of a new downloadable poster available from the Texas Medical Association’s Be Wise – ImmunizeSM program to help you stress the need for flu vaccination, this year more than ever.
Gov. Greg Abbott today reauthorized non-emergent elective surgeries at hospitals and allowed nursing homes to reopen for visitations under certain conditions across the majority of Texas.
To help your patients or their parents answer questions about COVID-19 as school classes resume, TMA has created several documents for you to share.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, federal health officials are considering expanding testing capacity for certain commercial, academic, medical center, and public health laboratories to help maximize diagnostic testing in the U.S.
TMA submitted written testimony Tuesday to the House Committee on Insurance, providing details and recommendations on price gouging, surprise medical bills, health insurance premiums, and more caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Texas Medical Board (TMB) does not prohibit any drug or treatment for COVID-19 patients, including the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine, TMB President Sherif Z. Zaafran, MD, said.
If school districts during an epidemic want to exclude students who have declined vaccinations for reasons of conscience, both the law and public health considerations are on their side, the Texas Medical Association has told Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton.
COVID-19 patients with mild to moderate symptoms who isolated themselves at home should not be required to receive a negative test or a physician’s note to return to work or school, the Texas Medical Association COVID-19 Task Force said.
Led by its School Reopening Workgroup, the Texas Medical Association is offering schools and physicians tools to mitigate risk for COVID-19 spread as classes resume across the state.
The Texas Medical Board (TMB) and Texas Medical Association remind physicians to continue to use strong medical judgment when considering drugs and therapies to treat COVID-19 and to take all appropriate steps when making any treatment decision.
TMA, joined by six other state health care organizations, has produced a list of principles to help hospitals and other health care facilities provide more flexible visitation policies for patients facing serious illness or end-of-life situations during the COVID-19 crisis.
With flu season on the horizon – and the COVID-19 pandemic expected to continue – Texas physicians should strongly encourage patients to receive a flu vaccination as early as possible.
As cases of COVID-19 continue to climb, the greater the chance it will find its way to your office. If it hasn’t happened already, no doubt you’ve been bracing for that possibility for months.
Remember the board game Risk, where the goal was basically to take over the world?
Well, let’s play Risk COVID-19, in which you try to guess which activities put people more at risk for contracting the coronavirus that causes the disease.
Many Texas physicians have stepped up to care for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes retired physicians and others who have volunteered their services in areas where they are needed most. If you’d like to volunteer but are concerned about your potential liability, check out TMA's recent white paper.
Since May 1, TMA and county medical societies (CMS) have helped physician practices throughout the state receive personal protective equipment (PPE) they’ve desperately needed to safely care for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Texas physicians must follow required minimum safe-practice standards related to COVID-19 – and post a notice describing those minimum standards – under an emergency rule the TMB adopted late yesterday. The rule went into effect at midnight May 1.
How do umbrellas protect us from disease? Austin pediatrician Ari Brown, MD, a Texas Medical Association physician leader, uses an umbrella analogy to explain how community immunity works, in this video.
Looking for resources to promote health equity? TMA’s Social Determinants of Health Resource Center provides a wealth of information for physicians seeking to learn more about social factors that drive health outcomes. The resource center includes links to educational material, screening tools, care management resources and more.
At an unprecedented live virtual meeting Saturday, the Texas Medical Association House of Delegates took action on a variety of initiatives important to the health of all Texans, including adopting policy to address health care disparities specifically related to cancer; laying the foundation for the creation of an LGBTQ Health Section; and setting principles for community-based accountable care organizations (ACOs).
Texas’ rate of maternal deaths is slightly above the national level, long-awaited new data from the National Center for Health Statistics shows.
The State Board of Education has approved health education standards that would require public schools to teach the importance of human papillomavirus vaccines beginning in seventh grade.
September 2019 brought what could become a major victory for the state’s handling of opioid addiction. Drugmaker Purdue Pharma – which faced thousands of lawsuits from cities and states, including Texas, for its role in the national opioid crisis – announced it had agreed to a settlement with 24 state attorneys general and other plaintiffs.
Texas physicians got the kind of huge win on tobacco issues they haven’t seen in decades – a law to keep tobacco products away from young people.
As physicians, we encourage our patients every day to be active and adopt a healthy lifestyle. But we know that many of our patients suffer from irreversible chronic conditions, like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which affects an estimated 1.1 million Texas adults. This disease can make it difficult for people to get regular exercise.
November is National COPD Awareness month. Find out how you can help prevent COPD at your walk this month.
Preventing head injuries is important, especially among student athletes. TMA has compiled resources to help physicians, coaches, parents, and students better understand the consequences and severity of head-related injuries.
Possible changes to how the federal government determines the national poverty level could negatively affect the well-being and health care options for large portions of the population, a coalition of 10 state medical associations told the nation’s chief statistician this week.
The impact of adverse childhood events (ACEs) can be lasting and costly on patient health and medical outcomes.
In the United States, more than 20% of adults report experiencing three ACEs during their youth, potentially increasing the risk of negative, chronic health consequences and challenges such as alcoholism, depression, unemployment, heart disease and substance abuse, among many others.
Learn More About ACEs
TeleTown Hall Recordings –June 23,May 18, May 7,April 20,andMarch 10
Hang This Sign on Your Door to Keep Patients and Staff Safe
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published a Guide for Clinicians on the Appropriate Dosage Reduction or Discontinuation of Long-Term Opioid Analgesics. The guide covers important issues to consider when changing a patient’s chronic pain therapy, including issues to consider prior to making a change, when initiating a change, and as a patient’s dosage is being tapered.
Read the Complete Guide Here
Read the latest public health testimonies presented by Texas physicans during the 86th Texas Legislature.
TMA 2019 Legislative Priorities
Host a Hard Hats for Little Heads Event
Sponsor a Regular Walk With a Doc
Host a Be Wise – Immunize Event
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Got Public Health questions? Call or email the Knowledge Center