CMS limits on-site complaint, recertification surveys

CMS has placed limitations on hospital complaint and recertification surveys for 30 days, according to the American Hospital Association. 

CMS will limit on-site surveys to complaints with immediate jeopardy allegations, according to guidance released Jan. 20. CMS will prioritize the complaints based on the danger posed to patients, likelihood of noncompliance with Medicare rules and whether immediate action must be taken to ensure patient safety. 

CMS has also suspended most hospital recertification surveys for 30 days. The one exception is a subset of hospital reaccreditation surveys. CMS will provide further guidance in the near future on the reaccredidation surveys, according to the association. 

CMS said that if it finds deficiencies during a survey, the termination date of the Medicare contract will be extended for at least 30 days. During this time hospitals will not need to submit corrective action plans for deficiencies not deemed an immediate jeopardy to patients. Hospitals with an immediate jeopardy incident will have an on-site survey.

CMS said it may extend the 30-day limitation in 30-day increments. 

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