The Quality, Safety and Oversight (QSO) group of CMS recently released a memo to nursing homes that is pertinent to hospice and home health providers.  Specifically, QSO-20-29-NH Interim Final Rule Updating Requirements for Notification of Confirmed and Suspected COVID-19 Cases Among Residents and Staff in Nursing Homes, which  the instructions for reporting COVID-19 facility information to residents, their representatives, and families of residents in facilities as well as reporting COVID-19 data for the facility directly to the CDC.

“The FAQ document accompanying this memo has the following Q&A that addresses this:

Q: Do facilities need to inform anyone who walks through their doors (e.g., a hospice or other healthcare provider) of the same numbers of suspected and confirmed COVID-19 cases that they are sharing with residents, their representatives, and families?

A: No. Facilities are not required to provide the same COVID-19 information reported to residents, their representatives, and families. However, facilities would share with the visiting healthcare provider, if the resident receiving care is suspected of, or has laboratory-confirmed COVID-19. Any precautions the provider should take while in the facility (e.g., specific personal protective equipment) will be communicated to that provider by the facility as part of their standard practices under the infection prevention and control program requirement.

Prior to the COVID-19 PHE, regulations at 42 CFR §483.80(a)(2)(ii), already required LTC facilities (i.e., skilled nursing facilities and/or nursing facilities) to have written standards, policies and procedures regarding infection control, to include when and to whom possible incidents of communicable disease or infections should be reported, such as to local/state health authorities.  Other health care providers with staff coming into the facility may be part of these facility policies.”

Source: NAHC Report


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