In October of 2016 CMS conducted a webinar on the Emergency Preparedness Rule. A copy of the recording of the webinar can be found on the Medicare Learning Network Webinar, CMS posted the slides for the webinar to provide additional guidance regarding the Emergency Preparedness Final Rule. While there are no major surprises within the text of the presentation, the agenda indicates it will provide some good resources. Additionally, there are are some key areas worth your attention:
Programmatic Focus – The emphasis is on the development of a Comprehensive Emergency Management Program with annual review, which compliments FEMA’s existing Preparedness Cycle. This clearly not a collection of documents an organization can develop and then shelve for a rainy day.
Communication Plan – CMS calls out the Communication plan with more detail around intent. As most emergency professionals know, you cannot have an incident or exercise without a communication failure. The requirement of a communication plan is CMS’ attempt to mitigate that occurrence.
Requirement Variability by Provider Type – The authors were clear to point out there are differences between providers even though much of the codified language is the same. The differences seem to emerge around how and to whom information is shared during an event.
As it relates to Survey and Certification Group (SCG) guidance, CMS’ language is very clear on timeline to compliance:
CMS just clarified the sense of urgency around compliance timeline, driving providers to quickly determine next steps and move to action.
The presentation looks to also cover emergency power, training, testing, and other key points to compliance. The agenda and slides also include information on resources on ASP&R TRACIE and the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP).
In addition to the resources afforded in TRACIE and in HPP, the SCG is also working on developing training for both surveyors and providers.
All in all this webinar should be well worth attendees time and may put some concerns to rest while creating some more.
Crisis Focus, LLC has focused expertise in healthcare emergency management, including CMS compliance. Please visit Crisis Focus’ CMS Emergency Preparedness resource page or contact us for more information.
Edits: The title of this post was edited for clarity and the information about accessing the webinar recording was added.