What We're Reading: CareMore, Aspire Health CEO Steps Down; HHS Opens Uninsurance Portal; Mask Concerns

Sachin Jain, chief executive officer of CareMore and Aspire Health, announced he will step down from both companies; HHS launches a new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Uninsured Program Portal; evidence suggests surgical mask use among healthcare workers are putting them at risk of COVID-19 infection.

CareMore, Aspire Health CEO Sachin Jain Steps Down

Sachin Jain, chief executive officer of CareMore Health System and Aspire Health, announced he will leave both companies by the end of the week, with Shaden Marzouk, MD, set to succeed him. Marzouk is a neurosurgeon and a US army veteran who held the rank of major, and is the former managing director for Asia Health and Global Health Innovation for AXA. Jain joined CareMore in 2015 and Aspire Health in 2018, leading the expansion of both companies. “Leading these companies has been the privilege of a lifetime because of the extraordinary people I had the gift of working with and the impact we made on patients,” said Jain.

HHS Announces COVID-19 Uninsured Program Portal

Evidence Suggests Surgical Masks Are Putting Healthcare Workers at Risk

HHS announced the launch of a new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Uninsured Program Portal through the Health Resources and Services Administration. The portal will allow healthcare providers who have conducted COVID-19 testing or provided treatment for those who were uninsured and infected with the virus on or after February 4, 2020 to submit reimbursement clains. While the CDC has said that surgical masks are “an acceptable alternative” to N95 masks except when performing a procedure such as an intubation on a patient with COVID-19, evidence has shown that these less protective masks may be the cause of illness among front-line health workers. Reported in Kaiser Health News, front-line health workers currently make up about 11% of all reported COVID-19 cases, attributing to more than 21,800 healthcare workers, with 71 deaths. In contrast to their advice noting it as an acceptable alternative, another CDC webpage said a surgical mask does “NOT provide the wearer with a reliable level of protection from inhaling smaller airborne particles and is not considered respiratory protection.”