COVID-19’s Effect on Chapter Activities

AAPC’s Local Chapter Team and the Chapter Association Board of Directors, sincerely thank you, our chapter officers, as you support our fellow AAPC members by changing in-person meetings to virtual events, and by canceling exams and rescheduling them for later in the year, during this season of the COID-19 pandemic. We offer the following as an update to what is currently happening at AAPC.
Canceling/Rescheduling Meetings
Q            Is our chapter required to hold virtual meetings?
A             No, you are not required to hold virtual meetings. However, we suggest that you hold a virtual meeting as an option since we don’t want our members to feel they cannot continue to receive CEUs at this time. We respect that many state and local governments have requested that we shelter in place.
Q            Are we required to change our in-person meetings to virtual meetings?
A             No. But at this time, it is preferred to change upcoming in-person meetings to virtual meetings because many AAPC members are looking for CEUs. In-person meetings should not be held at this time.
Q            If an in-person meeting is already approved for CEUs, is it necessary to cancel the meeting to make it a virtual meeting?
A             No, once the initial request has been made, your meeting has been approved for CEUs based on the educational content you originally submitted, so the CEUs stay the same.
Q            How can we change an in-person meeting to a virtual meeting if it has already been approved?
A             Yes. Follow these steps:

  • Do not cancel it.
  • If you want to use AAPC’s Zoom platform, simply click >>HERE<<   where you will provide  the details of your upcoming meeting. You will receive an email back with the availability of the Zoom platform and instructions to follow.
  • If you don’t need to use AAPC’s Zoom platform, email localchaptersceus@aapc.com and explain that your meeting is already approved for CEUs, provide your own platform link, and explain you want the details online to be updated to reflect that it is a virtual meeting.

Q            How does my chapter go about scheduling a virtual meeting if it is not yet approved for CEUs?
A            Follow these steps:

  • If you need to use AAPC’s Zoom platform click >>HERE<<  to check on the availability.
  • You will hear back from AAPC with a link (if it is available).
  • Go online in the officer area and request approval for CEUs for a meeting as you usually do. Ensure your meeting is easily recognized as a virtual meeting by:
  • Naming the meeting “Virtual Chapter Meeting – Name of Meeting” example=Virtual Chapter Meeting – 2020 CPT Updates
  • Writing “Virtual Chapter Meeting” in the location field
  • Writing “See link below” in the address field
  • Writing “Click here to join this virtual chapter meeting: (add link here)” in the directions field (see step 1)
  • Submit the request and the CEU team will approve the meeting and it will appear in the list of upcoming events in your chapter.

Q            Does our chapter have to hold a minimum number of in-person meetings in order to be able to host virtual chapter meetings?
A             No

Q            How many virtual chapter meetings can our chapter host?

A             As many as are helpful for your chapter members.

Q            Have the requirements for having local chapter meetings changed since most people are sheltering in place due to COVID-19?

A             The rules have not changed but we are working with officers to accommodate them in these rapidly changing times.

Q            Is our chapter required to hold in-person meetings?

A             Yes, but not at this time. Although we understand the world is going through a major crisis, it is still recommended that we hold four in-person meetings per year. If in time this COVID-19 pandemic does not allow for gatherings, AAPC will be adaptable as needed.

Q            What are the rules for having local chapter meetings?

A             Officers are required to hold 6 educational events per year. It is preferred four are in person and the other two could be virtual.

Q            What will happen if we cancel an in-person meeting instead of making it into a virtual meeting? Will our chapter be penalized?

A             No, there is no penalty for cancelling a meeting.

Q            Will we still be required to hold six educational events in 2020?

A             It is hard to say how long the restrictions for gathering in groups will be around. We are interested in accommodating AAPC members who need their CEUs and our chapters are integral in that, so we prefer that six educational events be scheduled in 2020.

Q            How do I find out about AAPC’s virtual meeting platforms?

A             AAPC has two Zoom accounts that chapters can use for free. Click here for availability: >>HERE<<

Q            Do I have to use one of AAPC’s Zoom platforms?

A             No, it is one option. You may use a different platform if you have access to one.

Q            Can our chapter purchase a Zoom platform?

A             Yes, we understand the price is about $15.00 per month. https://zoom.us/pricing

Q           How do I reserve one of AAPC’s Zoom platforms?

A            Click this link here to reserve it: >>HERE<<

 Q          Can I reserve it by emailing localchaptervirtualmeetings@aapc.com?

A            Yes, but because of the volume of requests we are receiving, it is faster to click the link above.

Q            Who can attend virtual meetings?
A             It is preferred that chapter members and AAPC members from other chapters who live within a 100-mile radius are those who are invited and attend.
Q            Who can get CEUs for attending virtual chapter meetings?
A             It is preferred that chapter members gain CEUs from their own chapter meetings or from those within a 100-mile radius.
Q            Can attendees join our virtual meeting by telephone?
A             No, meetings should be attended by viewing the presentation along with the speaker and officers, where possible.
Q            Can virtual meetings be recorded and shared with those who couldn’t attend?
A             No, virtual meetings are meant to be interactive.
 Q            What if our chapter has access to a virtual platform and we want to schedule a virtual meeting? How do we do that?
A             Go online in the officer area and request approval for CEUs for a meeting as you usually do. It will be easily recognized as a virtual meeting if you follow these steps:

  • Identify the link for the meeting log-in before you start the process
  • Name the meeting “Virtual Chapter Meeting – Name of Meeting” example=Virtual Chapter Meeting – 2020 CPT Updates
  • Write “Virtual Chapter Meeting” in the location field
  • Write “See link below” in the address field
  • Write “Click here to join this virtual chapter meeting: (add link here)” in the directions field (see step 1)
  • Submit the request and the CEU team will approve the meeting and it will appear in the list of upcoming events in your chapter.

Q            What if our chapter has access to a virtual platform and we want to change a meeting that is already approved for CEUs to a virtual meeting? Are we required to notify AAPC?
A             Yes, because the link to join the meeting must be added online, as well, as the name updated to show the members the meeting is now virtual.
Q            How does our chapter notify AAPC that we will be hosting a virtual meeting using our own link once it’s already approved?
A             Email localchaptersCEUs@aapc.com and explain that your meeting is already approved for CEUs, provide your own platform link, and explain you need the name changed to reflect that it is a virtual meeting.
Q            Is there a reimbursement available for holding a virtual meeting?
A             Yes, as long as the officers mark attendance in the same way they mark attendance for an in-person meeting.
Q            How do we know who attended our virtual chapter meetings?
A             Be sure to inform chapter members that they must provide first and last names and accurate email addresses when logging into the meeting, so the platform can track their attendance on a report. Officers must host the virtual meetings on a platform that has a reporting function.
Q            How do we mark attendance for our virtual meetings?
A             If you are using AAPC’s Zoom platform you will be sent a list of attendees within a few days after the meeting. If you are using your own platform, be sure it has a reporting feature where you can download a list of attendees. Use the list to go online and mark attendance as you usually do for in-person meetings.
Q            How are CEUs awarded for attendees at virtual meetings?
A             After the meeting is over, mark attendance the usual way online by using the attendance list sent to you from AAPC. Mark attendance for all attendees who can be identified by their name and member ID number. Then their CEUs will auto-populate into their trackers.
Canceling/Rescheduling Exam Sites

Q            Why are all exams in April canceled if our facility is not closed?
A             It was a difficult decision, but it was made to ensure the safety of you, our officers, and our members. Ultimately, we want to expedite every examinee’s opportunity to certify, but right now safety is our primary concern.
Q            The facility we use to proctor exams has closed its doors through May. Will our chapter be penalized if we cancel our May exam?
A             Absolutely not. AAPC respects the current recommendations of the local and national government agencies regarding group events during this time of the COVID-19 pandemic. We want all members to be safe.
Q            Will there be consequences for examinees whose exams are cancelled?
A             For examinees, all cancellation fees will be waived, and they will be able to apply their vouchers to a future exam.
Q            Will AAPC resume facilitating exams after April 30th?
A             It is difficult to determine at this time. We will continue to monitor the guidance of the CDC, the WHO and the White House Taskforce. Some exam proctor facilities may require cancellations beyond April 30th. We will continue to update you through our website, email and social media.
Q            What are the requirements for hosting exams during this time of sheltering in place?
A             The requirement to maintain a chapter is to host four exams annually. For your safety and the safety of all our members, all US exams are cancelled through April 30th. Although it is preferred that chapters host an exam in every quarter, we understand that we must be flexible.
Q            Will our chapter be required to host multiple exams at the end of the year?
A             As is always the case, there are many AAPC members who want to sit the for the exam before the end of the year and it is likely this will happen again this year. We anticipate a large number of examinees due to the cancellations this spring. To accommodate these members AAPC will need chapters to step up and help provide opportunities for these examinees. It may be wise to schedule exam sites in the fall/wintertime as soon as possible to facilitate all these examinees. AAPC is looking for solutions to this potential issue.
Miscellaneous Questions
Q            Why is May MAYnia being moved to October?
A             We want plenty of time to plan for an in-person event. No one knows at this time how long we will be sheltering in place.
Q            What if we already have plans for an October event?
A             That’s great! Every chapter meeting or seminar held in October will be part of our event. However, your chapter is not obligated to participate in the October event.
Q            Will we be sent giveaways for members for the event in October like we have been in May in the past?
A             Yes, the number of giveaways sent will be based on the attendance at 2019’s May MAYnia event.

Comments are closed.