HHS proposes withdrawing 'sunset' rule

HHS proposed repealing its "sunset" rule that would require the department to eliminate existing regulations after 10 years unless the department reviewed them and could justify keeping the regulation in place, according to an Oct. 28 Federal Register notice.

The Securing Updated and Necessary Statutory Evaluations Timely, or "sunset" rule, was finalized by HHS a day before President Joe Biden's inauguration. The policy was slated to take effect March 22, but HHS postponed the final rule March 19 by one year, pending judicial review.

The American Hospital Association and other health groups sued HHS in March over the rule. In the lawsuit, the health groups alleged that thousands of HHS regulations could disappear because of it.

"The SUNSET final rule, if implemented, would significantly alter the operations of HHS with considerable repercussions for a diverse array of stakeholders," HHS said in the Federal Register filing. "The rule is expansive in scope and impact, faced considerable opposition from stakeholders (and very little support), and lacked a public health or welfare rationale for expediting rulemaking."

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