CMS Emergency Preparedness Rule: Will Your Healthcare Facility Pass the Looming Compliance Survey?
State Survey Agency (SA) and Regional Office (RO) surveyors are now fully trained and ready to ask the tough questions during your healthcare organization’s regular CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) survey cycle. For nursing homes, it’s every year; for hospitals, it’s every three. Yours may be somewhere in between.
So, will your facility pass the looming survey for compliance with CMS’ Emergency Preparedness (EP) Rule? Good question. The November 15 deadline for adhering to the Congress-approved ruling has come and gone, but some organizations—namely those that are smaller and more specialized—might still be struggling to comply. And, somewhat justifiably.
Of the 17 types of healthcare providers named in the CMS EP Rule, home health agencies (HHAs), rural health clinics (RHCs) and other facilities may find they do not have the resources, time, budget or emergency preparedness expertise to understand (or implement) emergency plans that adequately support the four elements of the requirement.
Per CMS, these elements are:
Risk Assessment, Emergency Operations and Continuity Planning (Include but not limited to):
Vulnerability to hazards likely in a geographic area
Equipment and power failures
Interruption in communications, including cyber attacks
Loss of all/portion of facility, supplies, workforce
Disruption of normal operating procedures
Plan is to be reviewed and updated at least annually
System to contact staff, including patients’ physicians, other necessary persons
Well-coordinated within the facility, across health care providers, and with state and local public health departments and emergency management agencies.
Policies and Procedures
Complies with Federal and State laws
Supports emergency operations efforts and continuity of operations
Training, Testing and Plan Maintenance
Demonstrates capabilities through scenario-based exercises
Methods for identifying areas of improvement and taking corrective actions
The subject matter experts at BOLDplanning, while assisting the development of your plan, will instill a culture of preparedness among your staff, and provide guidance for developing and maintaining your facility’s overall preparedness program. They can even tailor exercises based on your needs. Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 615.469.5558 to learn more now.