June 11, 2020

Glide Path Approach Likely for CMS Removal of COVID Waivers; Others Likely to Remain

CMS is likely to use a glide path approach for removal of various waivers issued as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic according to a statement made by Kim Brandt, principal deputy administrator for policy and operations for CMS, during a Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society webinar. To offer providers flexibility and ease burdens during the pandemic, CMS issued hundreds of waivers related to Medicare and Medicaid, including significant waivers for telemedicine, provider supervision and authority requirements, and facility transfer rules. According to Brandt, CMS is still working with the White House and the administration to determine how to roll back the waivers, but a hard stop to all of the waivers is not likely. CMS is studying the degree to which each waiver is used to evaluate how to roll back certain restrictions or whether certain waivers, such as those for telemedicine, should remain indefinitely. Providers should continue to monitor the latest releases from CMS and HHS to ensure they remain compliant with future revisions to the waiver programs.