Alongside the FDA, the CDC is continually monitoring the availability, safety and use of COVID-19 vaccines. Despite the vaccine safety and effectiveness, according to the agency, only 17.7% of people in the U.S. over the age of 5 have received the recommended updated booster shot, meaning they are not up to date for the best protection against the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Health care workers continue to educate and motivate their patients to recieve the primary vaccine series and the most recent booster to avoid severe illness. As of April 22, 2024, there are several updates on the COVID-19 vaccination schedule for children:
- At the time of initial vaccination, depending on vaccine product, children ages 6 months–4 years are recommended to receive 2 or 3 bivalent mRNA vaccine doses; children age 5 years are recommended to receive 1 or 2 bivalent mRNA vaccine doses
- People ages 6 years and older who are unvaccinated or previously received only monovalent vaccine doses are recommended to receive 1 bivalent mRNA vaccine dose
To view the latest COVID-19 vaccine recommendations for children and teens, visit Stay Up to Date with COVID-19 Vaccines Including Boosters. Information for parents can be found in COVID-19 VACCINES FOR CHILDREN AND TEENS What Parents and Caregivers Need to Know.
The Consolidated Appropriations Act (“Omnibus”) passed in December 2022 established an end date for certain Medicaid-related provisions that were in effect over the course of the COVID-19 public health emergency. Most notably for patient populations covered by Medicaid, the “continuous coverage” requirement will end on March 31. This means that state Medicaid agencies may resume their eligibility determinations and begin disenrolling beneficiaries from the program on April 1. It is predicted that many people – including children – will lose Medicaid coverage despite their ongoing eligibility for the program. Current Medicaid and CHIP beneficiaries are urged to make sure their contact information is up-to-date with their state Medicaid offices. Additionally, on January 30, 2023, the Biden Administration announced its intent to end the public health emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic effective May 11. Additional provider-focused information will be shared soon. In the meantime, please feel free to read more from CMS (Medicaid.gov/Unwinding), the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families, and the Kaiser Family Foundation.
May 11th marks the closure of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. With many programs tied into the public health emergency availability of resources, the U.S. Health and Human Services emphasizes that the government will still be responding to issues arising from COVID-19. Still, many provisions will be rolled back. To help understand what is to come the U.S. Health and Human Services created “Fact Sheet: COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Transition Roadmap” that outlines key changes occurring with the ending of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. To visit the fact sheet, click here.
March 31 is the Phase 4 reporting deadline for the Provider Relief Fund (PRF). Phase 4 reporting is applicable to and required of any dentist who obtained PRF payments totaling more than $10,000 between July 1 and December 31, 2021. For complete information on what to track and how to report, check out the newest version of HRSA's Provider Relief Fund (PRF) and Provider Relief Fund Distributions and American Rescue Plan Rural Distribution Post-Payment Notice of Reporting Requirements. For additional help with reporting, visit "Reporting and Auditing FAQ." To access the Provider Relief Fund Reporting Portal, click here.
AAPD COVID-19 Resources
AAPD has provided additional resources regarding infection control, practice and staff management, emergency care, office closures/limited services and COVID-19 status.