CMS to prioritize inspections in COVID-19 hotspots, at-risk areas

CMS on March 23 rolled out an amended inspection process that state survey agencies will use to ensure healthcare facilities are adequately prepared to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Four things to know:

1. The inspection process builds on the agency's existing infection control protocols to include guidelines specific to COVID-19 from CMS and CDC. 

2. The inspection changes affect all types of healthcare providers, although CMS is paying close attention to nursing homes, where residents are more susceptible to the virus. About 147 nursing homes across 27 states currently have at least one resident with COVID-19, according to the CDC.

3. CMS is prioritizing inspections in current COVID-19 hotspots and areas where the virus will likely spread next. 

4. The agency also developed a self-assessment tool providers can use to gauge their own preparedness.

"Today, we're issuing a call to action to nursing homes, hospitals, and the entire healthcare system: Don’t wait to be inspected," CMS Administrator Seema Verma said in a press release. "Starting today, you can — and should — use CMS' self-assessment tool to ensure you're prepared to prevent the spread of coronavirus."

To learn more, click here.

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