CMS Announces Temporary Enforcement Delays for Certain SNF and NF Phase 2 Implementation Dates

PUBLISHED: Dec 4, 2017
Relevant to: Long Term Care

On September 28, 2016, The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) revised the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) and Nursing Facility (NF) Requirements for Participation, which became effective on November 28, 2016, and have a three-part phase-in of implementation dates over three years. Phase 1 became effective on November 28, 2016. Implementation of the new regulations for nursing homes under Phase 2 will become effective on November 28, 2017 (see S&C memo: 17-36-NH, dated June 30, 2017).

Implementation of Phase 2 reforms is scheduled to occur simultaneously with a new, computer-based LTC survey process in which CMS is incorporating the new regulatory requirements as well as combining the Traditional and Quality Indicator Survey processes. To address concerns about the implementation of the new requirements and new LTC survey process, CMS will be making specific policy and process adjustments to the enforcement system and results posted on Nursing Home Compare.

These changes include:

  • Temporary moratorium on imposing certain enforcement remedies for specific Phase 2 requirements: CMS will provide an 18-month moratorium on the imposition of certain enforcement remedies for specific Phase 2 requirements. This 18-month period will be used to educate facilities about specific new Phase 2 standards.
  • Freeze Health Inspection Star Ratings: Following the implementation of the new LTC survey process on November 28, 2017, CMS will hold constant the current health inspection star ratings on the Nursing Home Compare (NHC) website for any surveys occurring between November 28, 2017 and November 27, 2018.
  • Availability of Survey Findings: The survey findings of facilities surveyed under the new LTC survey process will be published on NHC, but will not be incorporated into calculations for the Five-Star Quality Rating System for 12 months. CMS will add indicators to NHC that summarize survey findings.
  • Methodological Changes and Changes in Nursing Home Compare: In early 2018, NHC health inspection star ratings will be based on the two most recent cycles of findings for standard health inspection surveys and the two most recent years of complaint inspections.

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