March 13, 2020

CMS Releases Additional Coronavirus Response Guidance for Hospice and Nursing Home Providers

On March 9th, the CMS released additional guidance to hospice and nursing home providers regarding appropriate responses to combat the COVID-19 virus. The guidance provides detailed screening, treatment, and transfer procedures for healthcare workers in both nursing home and hospice settings, as well as specifically advising all hospices to identify high risk individuals prior to appointments or upon arrival. For nursing homes, CMS issued a memorandum with additional guidance relating to nursing home patients and protocols. An accompanying CMS press release discusses the latest data from the CDC, which indicates that seniors are at the greatest risk of serious illness due to COVID-19. As stated by CMS Administrator Seema Verma, this new guidance continues CMS’ “laser focus[] on protecting patients, no matter where they are receiving care.”