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Welcome

Celebrating 80 Years Of Service!

The American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy (AAOA) represents over 2,700 Board-certified otolaryngologists and health care providers. Otolaryngology, frequently referred to as Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT), uniquely combines medical and surgical expertise to care for patients with a variety of conditions affecting the ears, nose, and throat, as well as commonly related conditions. AAOA members devote part of their practice to the diagnosis and treatment of allergic disease. The AAOA actively supports its membership through education, research, and advocacy in the care of allergic patients.

"Advance the comprehensive management of allergy and inflammatory disease in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery through training, education, and advocacy."

ADVOCACY UPDATES

CY 2022 Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule Summary

On July 13, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Medicare Physician…

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Congress Considers Extension of Telehealth Flexibilities Post-Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic forced Congress and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to…

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Changes To E/M Codes Beginning On January 1st

Effective January 1, 2021, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) finalized significant changes to…

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Changes in MACRA

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Before the close of 2017, all physicians must take action to avoid the 4 percent cut that will be assessed in 2019 for not participating in the new Quality Payment Program (QPP) authorized by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA).  Read More

CMS Announces Changes in MACRA Implementation Timeline. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced major changes to the implementation of the Medicare Access and CHIP Re-authorization (MACRA).
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Upcoming Dates

12/01/21: Research Grant Cycle
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02/22/22: Deadline For Call For Proposals
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04/01/22: Fellow Exam Application Deadline
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06/01/22: Research Grant Cycle
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06/26/22: Membership Application Deadline to be eligible for AAOA Member rate for the 2022 Basic Course

08/01/22: Scientific Abstract Submission Deadline

09/01/22: Membership Application Deadline to be voted in at the 2022 Annual Meeting

EDUCATION

The live stream of the 2021 AAOA Annual Meeting concluded on October 21st, but you can still register and earn CME/MOC credits. 4 hours of Pre-Work On-Demand content will be accessible until November 15, 2021. If you missed a lecture during our live-streamed content, do not worry. Most of the lectures will be available within the next week until November 15, 2021. Learn More

IFAR

Available Now

IFAR Impact Factor: 2.454

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IFAR Featured Content: COVID-19 - Free Access
Endonasal instrumentation and aerosolization risk in the era of COVID‐19: simulation, literature review, and proposed mitigation strategies . Read More

Changes in Managing Practices

Working together with AAOA staff, volunteer leadership and members will enable us to have a positive impact on our members’ practices.

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Live and Online CME

2022 AAOA Advanced Course
Hybrid! Santa Fe, NM & Virtually
January 13-15, 2022
Learn More and Register

2022 AAOA Basic Course
The Diptomat Beach Resort, Hollywood, FL
June 30-July 2, 2022

2022 AAOA Annual Meeting
Loews Philadelphia, PA
September 9-11, 2022

USP 797 Online Module
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News and Updates

DosedDaily: A Free Resource For Residents

The AAOA has partnered with DosedDaily to offer a free resource for residents to support…

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OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination & Testing Emergency Temporary Standard

On Friday, November 5, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued an interim final…

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College Allergy Symptoms Treatment Back to Shcool

PRACTICE RESOURCES

AAOA Practice Resource Tool Kit

The American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy (AAOA) Practice Resource Tool Kit is intended as a guide to help AAOA members integrate allergy into their otolaryngology practice and to continually improve on this integration as new information, regulations, and resources become available.

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PARTNER RESOURCE CENTER

AAOA has launched a Partner Resource Center to bring you partner resources that can assist your practice and patient care.

Visit the New Center>

PATIENT CORNER

OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination & Testing Emergency Temporary Standard

On Friday, November 5, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued an interim final rule with comment period establishing an emergency temporary standard (ETS) for employers with 100 or more employees.[1] Under the ETS, covered employers must develop, implement, and enforce a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy, unless the employer instead adopts and enforces a policy requiring employees to either get vaccinated or elect to undergo regular COVID-19 testing and wear a face covering at work in lieu of vaccination. All covered employees must be either fully vaccinated or be subject to weekly testing by January 4, 2022.[2] Fully vaccinated, for purposes of the ETS, means two weeks after the second dose in a two-dose series (e.g., Pfizer, Moderna) or two weeks after a single dose vaccine (Johnson & Johnson). On Saturday, November 6, a federal appeals court granted an emergency stay of the requirement, blocking enforcement of the rule.

The ETS requires employers to obtain proof of vaccination via any of the following:

  • Record of immunization from a healthcare provider or pharmacy
  • Copy of the COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card
  • Copy of medical records documenting vaccination
  • Copy of immunization records from a public immunization information system;
  • Copy of another official document verifying vaccination with the name of the vaccine, date of administration, and name of the administering professional/clinical site;
  • Attestation of vaccination, only if the employee is unable to produce acceptable proof of vaccination and if the employee signs and dates the statement attesting to vaccination status, stipulating that they are unable to provide proof; and acknowledging that providing false vaccination information may subject the employee to criminal penalties.

Employers that opt to not mandate full vaccination of their workforces or who have employees who are entitled to reasonable accommodation or have a medical contraindication to vaccination must ensure that unvaccinated workers are tested weekly for COVID-19. The ETS does not require employers to pay for any costs associated with testing. Employer payment for testing may, however, be required by other laws, regulations, or collective bargaining agreements. In addition, nothing prohibits employers from voluntarily assuming the costs associated with testing. Any test that is cleared, approved, or authorized (including emergency use authorization) by the Food and Drug Administration meets this standard, including antigen tests. Tests, however, cannot be both self-administered and self-read, unless observed by the employer or an authorized telehealth proctor. Employers are not required to provide on-site testing and may rely on laboratory-based or point of care testing obtained by the employee. Employers must maintain a copy of each test result for each unvaccinated employee. Employers must also ensure that unvaccinated employees wear face coverings indoors or when occupying a vehicle with another person for employment purposes.

In the rule and its FAQ, OSHA states that it has determined that there is adequate testing capacity and supply to meet the testing requirements of the ETS, but has structured the ETS to encourage vaccination. Per OSHA (QA 6.N.), “even if most employers were to forgo [requiring vaccination] and most of their employees were to choose not to be vaccinated, there would still be adequate testing capacity.”

The ETS also requires covered employers, whether or not mandating vaccination, to provide support for employees to get vaccinated, including up to four hours of paid time off to receive each primary dose of the vaccine (not including booster doses) and reasonable paid sick leave for side effects. This paid time off may run concurrently with existing sick time or paid time off, but employers may not require employees to use designated vacation pay for side effect time off.

The ETS also requires employers to require employees to promptly provide notice upon receipt of a positive COVID-19 test or diagnosis; immediately remove any employee that receives a positive COVID-19 test or diagnosis; provide information to employees about the vaccine or testing requirement; vaccine safety and efficacy; protections against retaliation and discrimination; and laws prohibiting false statements and documentation.

States that administer their own OSHA programs covering private-sector workers must either adopt the federal standards or implement a regulation that is at least as effective as the OSHA standard.[3] OSHA states that its requirements preempt any inconsistent state or local laws, including state bans on vaccination, masks, or testing. The OSHA standard does not preempt federal requirements for reasonable accommodations or other worker protections.

Compliance dates are as follows:

Requirement (and corresponding paragraph in rule)December 5, 2021January 4, 2022
Establish a policy on vaccination (d, page 61552)X 
Determine vaccination status of each employee, obtain acceptable proof of vaccination, maintain records and roster of vaccination status (e, page 61552)X 
Provide support for employee vaccination (f, page 61553)X 
Ensure employees who are not fully vaccinated are tested weekly (g, page 61553) X
Require employees to provide notice of positive COVID-19 test or diagnosis and remove any employee with a positive COVID-19 test or diagnosis (h, page 61553)X 
Ensure employees who are not fully vaccinated wear face coverings when indoors or when occupying a vehicle with another person for work purposes (i, page 61553)X 
Provide information to each employee about the OSHA ETS and standards and various other information (j, page 61554)X 
Report work-related COVID-19 fatalities to OSHA within 8 hours and work-related COVID-19 hospitalizations within 24 hours (k, page 61554)X 
Make certain records available to OSHA as requested (l, page 61554)X 

OSHA and other agencies have provided several resources to help employers and employees understand the new vaccine/testing ETS. Resources include:


[1] The rule generally applies to all employers with 100 or more employees, with certain exceptions including that it does not apply to employees who do not report to a workplace where other individuals are present; employees while they are working from home; or employees who work exclusively outdoors. The rule does not apply to workplaces covered under the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force COVID-19 Workplace Safety: Guidance for Federal Contractors and Subcontractors. It also does not apply to settings where employees provide healthcare services when subject to the requirement of the OSHA Healthcare ETS (29 CFR. 1910.502).

[2] Employees that have received the full vaccine course by January 4, 2022 are considered fully vaccinated, even if they have not yet completed the two week waiting period.

[3] States with their own OSHA programs include Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wyoming, and the US Virgin Islands.

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