The following information and resources are meant to help our members and partners navigate the uncertain road ahead as it relates to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Please check back often, as content is updated regularly. If you have a resource to add to this page, please send to firstname.lastname@example.org.
An Important Message from AACVPR President Ana Mola, PhD, RN, ANP-BC, MAACVPR
On behalf of the AACVPR Board of Directors and staff, we extend our deepest concern, astute public health surveillance, and ongoing association support for our members, colleagues and partners who are impacted by the outbreak of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. Monitoring and improving the quality of life for our patients, their families and Cardiac Rehabilitation (CR) and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (PR) professionals is at the core of our mission at AACVPR. That’s one reason why it is personally impossible not to be acutely affected by the news surrounding the situation. Read more >>
AACVPR COVID-19 Task Force
AACVPR is currently engaging our newly-established COVID-19 Task Force, which is comprised of board members, and both cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation specialists. This groups is focused on serving as a resource and repository for relevant information that pertains to our specialty and serving patients in these unprecedented times. They will be updating this webpage to provide up-to-date resources for you as you navigate the impact of this global pandemic.
AACVPR's Ongoing Advocacy for Telehealth
It’s disheartening that The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rejected a proposal from AACVPR to include cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation services as part of a temporary reimbursement for outpatient telehealth services, which was originally extended to evaluation and management services. CMS has opted not to extend these reimbursement services to CR/PR. Read more >>
Returning with Care
As shelter-at-home laws are relaxed, the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR) offers general considerations for cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation (CR/PR) programs as they determine when and how to safely resume center-based rehabilitation. AACVPR recommends a collaborative approach involving administration, infection prevention and control (IPC) department, medical director(s), regulatory/legal team and staff in the development, planning, provision of care and continuous monitoring related to reopening. Ongoing adaptation and updating of these plans and methods will be required as more is understood regarding risk reduction and practice in the CR/PR setting. A cautious approach may dictate beginning with a low census to optimize practices. The information below is not meant to be a guideline nor should it supersede a given institution’s policies and local laws and statutes.
Watch a recording of a Town Hall conversation with AACVPR leaders who helped craft the Returning with Care considerations, then download the Returning with Care infographic (JPEG).
Patient Screening Checklist
All patients should be screened for ability to practice appropriate safety precautions, including physical distancing, hand hygiene, etc., and to respond accurately to pre-program screening. Use this checklist to screen patients before returning to in-center care. Download >>
From AACVPR and other associations, free for members and non-members:
- 2019 AACVPR Webcast: Telehealth in Pulmonary Rehabilitation and COPD – Traditional pulmonary rehabilitation (PR) is effective in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) but is not readily accessible. Alternative modes of delivery of PR such as telehealth PR are needed, but most centers have limited experience with telehealth PR. This webinar will share experiences of initiating and maintaining a telehealth PR program at a single tertiary academic center.
- 2018 AACVPR Annual Meeting Recorded Session B209: Movin' Out: Extending Pulmonary Rehab out to the Home and Community – Pulmonary rehabilitation is grossly under-utilized, especially in the post-discharge period following the COPD exacerbation. Discharged patients are very reluctant to come in to a center-based program. This session would explore the option of extending PR to the home or community. The problem of poor-uptake will be reviewed, relevant evidence-based literature on home based PR will be reviewed, and innovative, revenue-neutral approaches will be discussed.
- Clinical Implications of COVID-19 Infection: Strategies for Preparedness, Mitigation, and Clinical Operations, presented by J. Hudson Garrett Jr., PhD, MSN, MPH, MBA, FNP-BC, IP-BC, PLNC, AS-BC, VA-BC, FACDONA, FAAPM, FNAP on behalf of the Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates (SGNA) – This free webinar recording reviews the current status of the COVID-19 Pandemic, implications to clinical practices in procedural settings, and also discuss commonsense approaches to ensuring a safe work environment.
- Coping With COVID-19: Panel Discussion on the Transition to Virtual/Home-based Cardiac Rehabilitation Programming, from the Canadian Association of Cardiovascular Prevention and Rehabilitation (CACPR) – This webinar will involve short presentations from programs across the nation followed by a Q & A period. During this time of uncertainty, CACPR would like to provide as much support as possible for the Cardiac Rehabilitation community. The webinar was made available on the CACPR website (cacpr.ca/Webinars) in April 2020.
- COVID-19 and Cardiac Rehabilitation – Panel Discussion on adapting CR amidst COVID-19, from the ICCPR