CMS Final Rule for HHA Subunits

PUBLISHED: Nov 20, 2017
Relevant to: Home Health

On January 13, 2017, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a final rule revising the Conditions of Participation (CoPs) for HHAs which was scheduled to become effective on July 13, 2017. A subsequent rule delayed the implementation of these CoPs until January 13, 2018. The final rule eliminated the definition for “subunit,” previously set forth at §484.2 and the regulation preamble stated:

“On the effective date of this rule, any existing subunits, which already operate under their own provider number, will be considered distinct HHAs and will be required to independently meet all CoPs, including having an independent governing body and administrator. Subject to State-specific laws and regulations, this Federal regulatory change will permit a subunit to apply to become a branch of its existing parent HHA if the parent provides “…direct support and administrative control” of the branch.”

Under the current CoPs for HHAs, Subunits are surveyed and certified separately from their Parent and must meet all the CoPs independently, with the exception that the Subunit and Parent may share a governing body and an administrator. A Subunit is assigned its own CMS Certification Number (CCN) and its own provider agreement. In preparation for the implementation of the new HHA CoPs, the MACs have already established separate enrollment records for the currently existing Subunits.

According to CMS, Subunits existing at the time of the effective date of the regulations will become freestanding HHAs unless they notify the State Survey Agency (SA) and the Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) that they wish to become a Branch of the Parent.

Follow the link below to read the CMS Memorandum.

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