Hospitals have until November to prepare for new CMS rule

The Joint Commission says hospitals will have until November to prepare for new Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) requirements. CMS will begin surveying health care facilities on its new Conditions of Participation (CoPs) on November 7, 2016, after the CoP effective date of July 5. Beginning November 7, facilities will need to comply with the new CoPs, which adopt the 2012 editions of NFPA 101: Life Safety CodeĀ® and NFPA 99: Health Care Facilities Code.
When CMS published its new CoPs in a federal rule in May, the effective date was July 5, 2016. The Joint Commission issued a memo on June 10 stating the new CMS survey deadline of November 7 and noting that this allows health care providers and suppliers more time to assess their facilities for compliance.
In the period between July 5 and November 7, surveys will be based on the 2000 edition of the Life Safety Code, the memo said. In instances where deficiencies are cited based on the 2000 edition, but would be compliant under the 2012 edition, a facility may verify compliance with the 2012 Life Safety Code as an acceptable plan of correction, the Joint Commission said.
The Joint Commission is revising its applicable standards to meet the new CoPs. CMS is giving the Joint Commission 60 days from June 8, 2016, to submit revised standards, surveyor tools, documents, and training, the Joint Commission said in its memo.
Several ASHE resources related to the new CMS requirements are available online. ASHE will continue to keep members updated on the latest information related to this topic.