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CMS Publishes New Rule and Revised Survey Tool for NFs Related to COVID-19 Testing Requirements for Staff and Residents

Last updated on 8/31/2020

The Center For Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) memo QSO 20-38-NH (PDF) announces the publication of a new rule at 42 CFR § 483.80(h) that establishes nursing facility testing requirements for staff and residents. CMS also revised the COVID-19 Focused Survey Tool to include the assessment of the new rule.

  • On August 25, 2020, CMS published an interim final rule that requires NFs to test staff and residents, including people providing services under arrangement and volunteers, for COVID-19.
    • Staff: NFs must document that testing was completed and the result of each staff test.
    • Residents: NFs must document in the resident records that testing was offered, completed (as appropriate to the resident’s testing status) and the results of each test.
  • CMS revised the COVID-19 focused survey tool for surveyors. The revised tool includes:
    • The assessment of compliance with the new testing requirements.
    • The assessment of compliance with the requirements for NFs to designate one or more individual(s) as the infection preventionist(s) who are responsible for the NFs infection prevention and control program.
    • Other revisions to reflect additional COVID-19 guidance updates.