CMS Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Hospitals – Part II

PUBLISHED: Sep 20, 2016

Today’s StayAlert! Notice is the second part of our review of new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) final rule that the hospital develop and maintain a comprehensive emergency preparedness program using an all-hazards approach.

As reviewed in last week’s StayAlert! Notice, hospitals must have an emergency plan that is reviewed and updated at least annually and is based on an all-hazards approach and a facility and community-based risk assessment and a communication plan.

In addition to above, hospitals are also required to have policies and procedures related to emergency preparedness. Please see the final rule for a complete list of required policies.

Some of the key required policies include:

  • Plans for evacuating patients to alternative care sites
  • Emergency power systems
  • Sewage and waste disposal

Hospitals must also have in place:

  • Training for all staff
  • Testing of the emergency plan on at least an annual basis

CMS notes in the final rule that hospitals accredited by The Joint Commission will likely face a “…smaller burden associated with this final rule…” because TJC already has comprehensive emergency preparedness requirements for hospitals. That said, even TJC-accredited hospitals should review the final rule to make sure they are addressing all key areas of emergency preparedness.

Included with today’s notice are example policies related to the above emergency preparedness requirements. MCN Healthcare’s Emergency Management and Bioterrorism manual contain example policies to address all of your emergency management needs. Follow the link below to access the complete manual.

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