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CMS Memo Regarding Surveillance Issued

Angie Szumlinski Compliance

The new memo outlines a performance-based funding requirement tied to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act supplemental grants for State Survey Agencies, new guidance for the limited resumption of routine survey activities and enhanced penalties for noncompliance with infection control. You can read the new memo here: https://www.cms.gov/files/document/qso-20-31-all.pdf

Don’t Do That, Do This!

Angie Szumlinski Compliance

When posting facility data In this time of ever-changing rules and regulations, providers are now responsible for posting facility data on the CDC/NHSN website. This data may be used to determine when and if an infection control survey should be initiated, how much PPE is being utilized, how much PPE will be needed, how you are doing with staffing, etc. …

Infection Control – Focused Surveys

Angie Szumlinski Compliance, Health

As we continue to struggle with the effects of COVID-19 in our centers, the loss of life, devastating illness, and the negative effects of isolation, CMS is continuing to perform focused infection control surveys. Yes, that piece of our life has also changed as well, these surveys will be performed remotely with limited “on-site” time. Some states are allowing 100% …

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A Flurry of Activity!

Angie Szumlinski Compliance

With the ever-changing landscape of how we operate our organizations, CMS continues to update and fine tune the process. Yes, stay tuned it will change tomorrow! That said, we do have some good news! CMS revealed new Blanket Waivers for LTC last week that may be helpful to you as you struggle to maintain a semblance of order! Some of …

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CMS Issues Interim Final Rule Updating Requirements for Notification of COVID-19 Cases

Angie Szumlinski Compliance

Memorandum Summary CMS is committed to taking critical steps to ensure America’s healthcare facilities are prepared to respond to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency (PHE). On May 8, 2020, CMS will publish an interim final rule with comment period. COVID-19 Reporting Requirements: CMS is requiring nursing homes to report COVID-19 facility data to the Centers for Disease …

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LTCF COVID-19 Module Enrollment

Angie Szumlinski Compliance, Health

Although reporting requirements have not been announced or finalized, the CDC’s NHSN (National Healthcare Safety Network) is working with CMS to have long-term care facilities begin reporting COVID-19 cases in their system on a scheduled basis. LTCFs eligible to report into the new COVID-19 Module include skilled nursing facilities/nursing homes, long-term care for the developmentally disabled, and assisted living facilities. …

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Decontamination and Reuse of Filtering Facepiece Respirators

Angie Szumlinski Compliance, Health

The FDA has approved an emergency authorization for decontamination/reuse of N95 respirators as a crisis capacity strategy to ensure continued availability. It is critical that the integrity of the N95 respirator, including user seal check be monitored after each decontamination process. This emergency authorization is limited to the current COVID-19 pandemic only. Please be sure to check the CDC and …

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CMS requirements for notification of confirmed COVID-19

Angie Szumlinski Compliance

On April 19, 2020, the Director and the Quality, Safety and Oversight Group at CMS released a memo (Ref: QSO-20-26-NH) regarding upcoming requirements for notification of confirmed COVID-19 (or COVID-19 persons under investigation) among residents and staff in nursing homes. The information is a “heads up” as the final requirements have not been made public to date. In fairness, reading …

N95 Respirators

Angie Szumlinski Announcements, Compliance, Health

HealthCap risk managers have received many questions regarding using N95 respirators versus medical facemasks while caring for residents infected with COVID-19. Per OSHA, N95 respirators are the standard for caring for residents with airborne illness, COVID-19 is spread by droplets, it is NOT airborne, so airborne precautions are not required. However, as with everything we do in healthcare, there is …

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Survey Agency Announcement

Angie Szumlinski Compliance

While CMS had also previously announced that its infection-control efforts would be concentrated in areas with significant numbers of COVID-19 cases — including California, New York, and the Seattle metropolitan area — Verma on Monday said its new strategies will take things a step further. Using the CDC’s database of reported COVID-19 cases and modeling tools, CMS will attempt to deploy its …