CMS finalizes disaster preparedness rule for Medicare, Medicaid providers

From AMA Morning Rounds, 9/12/16.

The New York Times (9/10, A14, Fink, Subscription Publication) reported that some 72,315 healthcare providers and suppliers “will have a little over a year to meet federal disaster preparedness requirements completed this week by” CMS, but they will have to “scramble” to comply with the “unusual” rule, which “has provisions for 17 different provider types.” Nicole Lurie, MD, assistant secretary for preparedness and response at HHS, explained that the rule “will make it more likely that facilities will be able to stay open and able to care for patients, and if they need to close or stop work temporarily, get back up and able to care for patients quickly.”

Modern Healthcare (9/10, Muchmore, Subscription Publication) reported that the rule applies to medical facilities which participate in Medicare and Medicaid. Under the rule, providers are required to “adhere to four best-practice standards: developing an emergency plan, creating a communications plan, having a training program and developing appropriate policies and procedures.” Lurie was also quoted as saying, “As people with medical needs are cared for in increasingly diverse settings, disaster preparedness is not only a responsibility of hospitals, but of many other providers and suppliers of healthcare services.”