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Knowledge Portal > Conquer COVID-19 > COVID-19 News > Posts > 5/19/20 - Operations Update
May 19
5/19/20 - Operations Update

Welcome to the MAY 19, 2020 update on UW Ob-Gyn departmental operations. 


During the May 14 Virtual Department Meeting, Nasia Safdar, MD, PhD, of the UW SMPH Department of Medicine presented an update on COVID-19. She took some time after her presentation to answer questions that came in via the chat – read her responses to questions about emerging COVID hotspots, why UW Health relaxed visitor restrictions, the effectiveness of tests, and more.

And, on Monday, May 18, Public Health Madison Dane County released their plan for the phased reopening of Dane County. Read more about the plan, including metrics for safety.  


UW Hospital, Meriter and The American Center are working together to create one combined OR dashboard to help improve efficiency and coordination across the three locations. Labor and Delivery will be included in the dashboard, which is great news!


A reminder from Legal and Business Integrity/Compliance: billing providers need to document patients’ consent for the Telehealth visit. Remember to gain consent from patients before beginning a telephone or video visit – consent is not implied during the scheduling process. Consent must be documented in the record.

More resources for providers:

  • The easiest way for a provider to document consent is to:
    • At the beginning of the visit, verbally gain consent for the Telephone and/or Video visit
    • Document that consent using the .phonevisit (for Telephone), or the .video (for video).
      • We think a potential area of disconnect is the providers may not know that the .video dot phrase actually contains the consent language.
        Furthermore; using the .video dot phrase will be a visual reminder for the provider to ask the patient for their consent to do the telephone and/or video visit.
      • We are encouraging the use of the .dot phrases because the dot phrases contain the necessary documentation elements for Telehealth visits.
  • Information about consent is also in the following documents:
  • Additional information about Telehealth can be found here: COVID-19 Hub > Telehealth and on page 5 of Telehealth - Provider Basics for Use of Video for Ambulatory Video Appointments



Planning with Meriter leadership has gone very smoothly for reintroducing medical students to Labor and Delivery – thanks to all who supported the process!


Just two Virtual Department Meetings remain before we transition back to M&M and Grand Rounds on Thursday mornings. Please join us for important updates in the next couple weeks (including some extremely important HR updates to be presented this Thursday, May 21):

  • On May 21, don’t miss Vaccine Updates from Dr. James Conway of the UW SMPH Department of Pediatrics (watch on WebEx, 8:00am)
  • On May 28, UW SMPH Dean Robert Golden, MD will join us for an update on how SMPH is doing.


  • As of May 15, employees may now start taking furlough time. More information on the UW-Madison Furlough Policy is available in this presentation. You can also take a look at the recently-updated UW-Madison Furlough FAQs​, and the FAQs from the UW SMPH furlough webinars.
  • Update - FEMA COVID-related activity tracking. Most employees are now receiving emails from UWPD as reminders to enter your COVID activities as part of this process.
    • For hourly employees who enter time into a bi-weekly timesheet, there is not a change in process. Retropspectively, track data in the time-tracking spreadsheet back to March and send to supervisor for review. Then submit to Meghan Cigale for entry into HRS.  Prospectivley, enter directly into your biweekly timesheet using the correct time tracking code from the dropdown.
    • ​For salaried employees paid monthly, continue to track your COVID-related time in the time tracking spreadsheet. Hold off on entering into the online data entry tool for now.  Campus is exploring time saving entry options.


Shout-outs for great work across the department continue to come in! A moment of thanks for Kara Hoppe, DO:

“Dr. Kara Hoppe has led the charge for telehealth in high risk pregnancies, even before the COVID pandemic. She continues to guide us through remote monitoring and video visits. Thank you for your leadership!” – Katie Antony, MD, Assistant Professor (CHS), Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Share your own messages of thanks! Give someone a shout-out here, and look at what others have shared on the UW Ob-Gyn Gratitude page.

Be honest – how’s your quarantine diet? If you need a little inspiration, the Department of Nutritional Sciences in the UW-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences has numerous posts about nutrition in the time of COVID-19 such as nutrition for teens and seniors, how to avoid mindless snacking, and healthy takeout or delivery strategies.

You can find resources to support mental and physical resilience on the UW Ob-Gyn Wellness Committee resources page. 

XO, Laurel

UW Health COVID-19 / UW-Madison COVID-19 Plans and Response / U.S. CDC / Wisconsin DHS


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