AOA Excel COVID-19 resources

AOAExcel

AOAExcel® continues to provide solutions to help AOA members practice smarter and more efficiently while adapting to changes prompted by the coronavirus (COVID-19). Valuable resources available to AOA members through AOAExcel's products and services include:

Personal protective equipment (PPE): Due to the efforts of states, localities and public health organizations, and through federal prioritization and targeting efforts, PPE supplies are being directed to outbreak hotspots and potential future hotspots. Looking beyond the current nationwide shortage, AOA doctors are advised that AOAExcel's (ExcelOD.com) exclusive group purchasing organization (GPO) partner, Intalere, is positioned to gain assured, long-term access to steady supplies of hospital-grade, quality-controlled PPE at competitive pricing. This is an AOA member benefit.

  • For doctors/practices already enrolled in AOAExcel's GPO program: You may directly contact Intalere's Operational Continuity & Emergency Management team at 877.711.5600 for the latest information on PPE availability and access. Intalere member number is required. If you do not know your member number, it can be accessed by contacting the AOAExcel team at aoaexcel@aoa.org.
  • For doctors/practices not yet enrolled in AOAExcel's GPO program: Provide basic registration information. The enrollment process will be completed within four business days. To get started or for other assistance, contact the AOAExcel team at aoaexcel@aoa.org.

In addition, Intalere advises AOA practices to consider the following tips when making supply orders:

  • Prioritize ordering from your current suppliers. Every vendor is going to service their existing customers on the items they currently purchase before moving on to expanded product orders from current customers and orders from new customers.
  • Increase your order volume wisely. Practices may decide to increase the volume of their standard orders as a preventative measure, but it is important to keep in mind that suppliers are closely monitoring order volumes and may cancel large orders to prevent the hoarding of supplies. In most scenarios, a marginal increase. Five cases of a product as opposed to the standard order of three cases, for example, will not trigger order cancellation.
  • Place additional orders with a variety of vendors. By marginally increasing the volume of your orders with your current vendors and by placing additional small orders at a variety of suppliers, you can increase the likelihood of receiving your practice's needed supplies in a timely fashion.
  • Reduce the "burn rate" (usage) of hand sanitizer and other PPE. It's estimated that over 60% of the PPE products used in the United States are manufactured in China, which means vendors are receiving these products at a much slower rate, if at all.

Professional liability insurance for telehealth: The AOAExcel malpractice insurance policy does not include any exclusions of coverage for vision telehealth services provided by doctors of optometry.

The AOA malpractice insurance policy provides comprehensive coverage that aligns with the services that doctors of optometry provide to their patients within their state's defined scope of practice, which may or may not include vision telehealth services.

For those doctors who do not have AOAExcel's malpractice insurance policy but are providing telehealth services, below are three questions they should ask their insurance broker:

  1. Ask your insurance provider if vision telehealth services are covered by your policy. If you are told that vision telehealth services are covered, make sure to ask your insurance provider to show you where it explicitly says in your policy that you are covered for vision telehealth services.
  2. In addition to asking your insurance provider to show you proof of coverage for vision telehealth services, it is also good practice to review the exclusions and endorsements in your policy to ensure there is no language limiting or omitting vision telehealth services.
  3. Ask your insurance provider if you are covered for the full scope of coverage defined by the state in which you practice. If your state's scope of practice includes guidelines for utilizing telehealth technologies to provide patient care, then it is covered in your policy.

Full-scope coverage is available for doctors optometry by visiting Lockton Infinity/AOAExcel's partner site or calling 888.343.1998. AOA members can also receive a complimentary policy review by visiting aoa.org/aoaexcel/aoaexcel-policy-review.

AOAExcel insurance premium relief: The AOA is paying for three months of premium for all AOAExcel life and disability members who are currently insured. Qualifying members will receive a letter with further details. If you have further questions on the policies affected, please call 866.331.0180.

Personal loans: AOAExcel-endorsed business partner Laurel Road offers personal loans allowing doctors of optometry to borrow up to $45,000. These loans can be utilized within a practice as well. Find out more about a Laurel Road loan that may fit you.

Practice line of credit: One of AOAExcel's endorsed business partners offers business lines of credit to practices beginning at $10,000 with no specific maximum based on a required credit approval. Doctors can find out more information by filling out this form and will then be connected to a regional representative.