On May 9, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced significant steps to reduce unnecessary, obsolete or burdensome regulations on hospitals and health care providers. The first rule revises the Medicare Conditions of Participation (CoPs) for hospitals and critical access hospitals (CAHs). The second, the Medicare Regulatory Reform rule, will produce savings of $200 million in the first year by promoting efficiency. This rule eliminates duplicative, overlapping and outdated regulatory requirements for health care providers.
Among other changes, the final rules will:
- Increase flexibility for hospitals by allowing one governing body to oversee multiple hospitals in a single health system;
- Let CAHs partner with other providers so they can be more efficient and ensure the safe and timely delivery of care to their patients;
- Require that all eligible candidates, including advanced practice registered nurses and physician assistants, be reviewed by medical staff for potential appointment to the hospital medical staff and then be granted all of the privileges, rights, and responsibilities accorded to appointed medical staff members; and
- Eliminate obsolete regulations, including outmoded infection control instructions for ambulatory surgical centers; outdated Medicaid qualification standards for physical and occupational therapists; and duplicative requirements for governing bodies of organ procurement organizations.
View the Medicare CoPs final rule at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-05-16/pdf/2012-11548.pdf and the Medicare Regulatory Reform final rule at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-05-16/pdf/2012-11543.pdf For additional information on the Hospital and other CoPs, visit the Conditions for Coverage & Conditions of Participation at http://www.cms.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/Legislation/CFCsAndCoPs/index.html?redirect=/CFCsAndCoPs/01_Overview.aspwebsite.