Category: Regulations

Employers likely to notice change after Acosta’s departure from DOL

U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Secretary Alexander Acosta’s announcement that he is leaving his post amid controversy over his role in a lenient plea deal for multimillionaire Jeffrey Epstein is likely to bring a change in tone to the agency. Acosta’s resignation will be effective a week after his July 12 announcement. He had faced […]

CMS seeking feedback on potential future quality measures and assessment data

A significant portion of the 2020 PPS proposed rule deals with potential measures and associated assessment elements that could come to the home health industry in the future. While CMS is not planning to finalize any of these measures or standardized patient assessment data elements (SPADES) as part of the rulemaking process this year, CMS […]

CMS announces a new finalized arbitration rule, proposes another that would postpone Phase 3

CMS has announced July 17 two new rules that, according to a CMS press release, will place more focus on SNF residents as a priority over paperwork by reducing unnecessary regulations and protecting their legal interests. The proposed rule would delay Phase 3 requirements, including QAPI and ethics and compliance standards. The final rule upends […]

CMS to hold two-day Quality Reporting training

Registration is open for CMS’ SNF QRP Provider In-Person Training Event, August 13 and 14, 2019. The training is a two-day in-person ‘Train the Trainer’ event for providers at the Four Seasons Hotel, 200 International Drive, Baltimore, MD 21202. This event will be open to all SNF providers, associations, and organizations. Like the May 2019 […]

Make sanction policy, hit other marks to avoid big fines for small HIPAA breaches

A recent HIPAA breach that involved transmission of protected health information (PHI) to only one party — a reporter — nonetheless cost a Connecticut practice $125,000, in part because the practice didn’t take simple precautions. In February 2015, a patient of Allergy Associates of Hartford, P.C., a four-doctor, three-office practice, had talked to a local […]

HHS, in partnership with industry, releases voluntary cybersecurity practices for the health industry

On Friday, December 28, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the “Health Industry Cybersecurity Practices (HICP): Managing Threats and Protecting Patients” publication. The four-volume publication aims to provide voluntary cybersecurity practices to healthcare organizations of all types and sizes, ranging from local clinics to large hospital systems. The industry-led effort was in […]

Updates to Appendix Z includes clarification on emergency preparedness and home health citations

In a memo from CMS dated February 1, 2019, the agency announced updates to Appendix Z of the State Operations Manual to reflect changes to the definition of an all-hazards approach to emergency preparedness, new home health agency citations, and clarifications under alternative source power and emergency standby systems. Updates include the following: CMS is […]

Feds increase fines for bloodborne pathogens, other workplace hazards

Source: Home Health Line Fines for Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) violations have been adjusted for inflation. A pre-publication version of the U.S. Department of Labor’s final rule increasing the civil monetary penalties was posted Jan. 15. Fines that fall in the categories of serious and other-than-serious and posting requirements will go up from […]

CMS extends its staffing exemption for hospices through 2020

Source: Home Health Line Hospices battling the ongoing nursing shortage have two additional years to use contract nurses due to “extraordinary circumstances,” CMS has announced. “This designation enables those hospice agencies, which are unable to provide a sufficient number of nursing staff directly to meet the needs of its patients due to the national shortage, […]

Federal judge finds Obamacare unconstitutional; law remains in effect pending further decisions

Source: Home Health Line A federal judge has ruled that the entirety of the Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare is unconstitutional, though he did not order a remedy and an appeal is already being assembled. Texas v. United States was filed in February in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, seeking declaratory […]