Define 'healthcare provider,' AHA tells Labor Department

The American Hospital Association is urging the U.S. Department of Labor to define the term "healthcare provider" as it relates to regulations in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

President Donald Trump signed the Families First Act into law March 18. The law includes provisions involving paid sick leave, insurance coverage of COVID-19 testing and unemployment benefits, reports Kaiser Family Foundation.

The law permits hospitals to exempt certain healthcare providers or emergency responders from some of the family and medical leave requirements. However, AHA noted that the existing regulations do not include several types of nurses and other front-line providers, such as custodial or facility management staff members.

"We urge the Secretary to amend the regulations for purposes of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to enable hospitals and health systems to exempt any employee whom the employer deems necessary to the provision of healthcare or response to an emergency," Ashley Thompson, AHA's senior vice president of public policy analysis and development, wrote in a letter to U.S. Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia. 

To view the full letter, click here.

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