COVID-19 Patient Notice and Acknowledgement Forms

March 23, 2020Alerts

Over the last several weeks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued and updated specific guidance on the COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic for health care professionals and advised health care facilities and clinicians, including physicians and dentists, to “prioritize urgent and emergency visits and procedures now and for the coming several weeks.” (See: CDC Guidance for Health Care Clinics). For additional details, please see our Physician Law blog post: Coronavirus Resources for Physicians and Dentists.

In connection with the CDC’s guidance and advisories (many of which have been echoed by state governors and health departments), we are recommending that health care practices and facilities consider implementing a COVID-19/Coronavirus Patient Notice and Acknowledgement Form to:

  1. Screen patients for symptoms of COVID-19, recent international travel history and knowledge of potential exposure events;
  2. Notify patients of the practice’s/facility’s policies with respect to COVID-19; and
  3. Obtain an acknowledgement from the patient that the practice/facility may reschedule a patient’s appointment for elective care if the patient is exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, recently traveled abroad or was subject to a known exposure event.

Every practice and health care facility, whether open or temporarily closed, should seriously consider creating and implementing such a form. Even after the initial outbreak is contained, practices and health care facilities will need to be sensitive to COVID-19 for an extended period of time.

We recommend that practices and facilities use this type of COVID-19/Coronavirus Patient Notice and Acknowledgement Form in tandem with:

  • A website notice of similar format;
  • A proactive appointment rescheduling policy for at-risk patients, so that the practice/facility does not inadvertently endanger any patients coming in for routine or elective treatment; and
  • A procedure to clean and sanitize the practice/facility in accordance with CDC standards.

If you have questions regarding the implications of the COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic on your practice or facility, or would like assistance preparing the patient notices, acknowledgement forms and/or policies described above, feel free to contact us.

Visit the Physician Law Blog and the Fox Coronavirus Resources Center for ongoing updates and additional information.