News & Updates
The Health Facilities Program is committed to ensuring excellent communication with acute and continuing care providers and suppliers in Kansas. This page contains information about current events, trends, resources, best practices and updates affecting our day to day health care work.
Proposed Temporary and Permanent Regulations for Rural Emergency Hospitals
Background and Purpose: The United States Congress, through the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, established a Rural Emergency Hospital designation. Commencing in January 2023, qualifying hospitals could apply for Rural Emergency Hospital designation and receive Medicare payment for providing emergency services.
The Rural Emergency Hospital designation is designed to maintain access to critical outpatient hospital services in communities that may not be able to support or sustain a Critical Access Hospital or small rural hospital. REHs are required to provide 24-hour emergency and observation services and can elect to furnish other outpatient services. Facilities designated as an REH will receive enhanced Medicare payments for certain outpatient services and additional monthly payments.
In response to the passage of the Consolidated Appropriates Act of 2021, the Kansas legislature passed HB 2208 which codified the Rural Emergency Hospital Act (K.S.A. 65-481 et seq). In establishing the Rural Emergency Hospital Act, the Kansas legislature recognized the importance and necessity of providing and regulating the system by which healthcare services are structured and integrated to promote the availability of and access to necessary and appropriate healthcare to protect the general health, safety, and welfare of the rural residents of Kansas. To meet its stated goals, the Kansas legislature created a category of licensure to enable certain Kansas hospitals to receive federal healthcare reimbursement as rural emergency hospitals.
- Rural Emergency Hospitals Temporary Regulations Approved for Hearing (PDF)
- Rural Emergency Hospitals Permanent Regulations Approved for Hearing (PDF)
- Economic Impact Statement for Temporary Rural Emergency Hospitals Regulations (PDF)
- Economic Impact Statement for Permanent Rural Emergency Hospitals Regulations (PDF)
New Quality Safety Oversight Memo
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released QSO-23-13-ALL (PDF) on May 1, 2023 providing guidance to address the expiration of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) which is occurring May 11. 2023.
Acute and Continuing Care providers/suppliers are to take immediate steps to return to compliance with the reinstated health and safety requirements listed in QSO-23-13-ALL.
Public Health Emergency Resource Update 2/23/23
On February 9, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the Public Health Emergency (PHE) for COVID-19 will end on May, 11, 2023. During the PHE, CMS has used a combination of emergency authority waivers, regulations, enforcement discretion, and sub-regulatory guidance to ensure easier access to care during the PHE for health care providers and their beneficiaries.
Some of the flexibilities that were created during the pandemic were recently expanded by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023. Others, while critical during our initial responses to COVID-19, are no longer needed. CMS has made further updates to the CMS Emergencies Page with useful information for providers – specifically around major telehealth and individual waivers – that were initiated during the Public Health Emergency (PHE).
Please reference the following guidance in response to the PHE ending May 11, 2023:
- Provider-specific fact sheets about COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) waivers and flexibilities.
CMS COVID-19 Waivers and Flexibilities for ACC providers include:
- Hospitals and CAHs (including Swing Beds), ASCs
- Home Health Agencies
- Long Term Care Hospitals & Extended Neoplastic Disease Care Hospitals
- Rural Health Clinics (RHCs)
New Releases CMS QSO Memos
- Revision to State Operations Manual (SOM), Hospital Appendix A -Interpretive Guidelines for 42 CFR 482.21, Quality Assessment & Performance Improvement (QAPI) Program 3/9/23
- Revisions to Hospice-Appendix M of the State Operations Manual Released 1/27/23
- Guidance for Rural Emergency Hospital Provisions, Conversion Process and Conditions of Participation 1/26/23
Public Health Emergency Resource Update 02/06/2023
On January 30, 2023, the Biden-Harris Administration announced its intent to end the national emergency and public health emergency (PHE) declarations related to the COVID-19 pandemic on May 11, 2023. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has resources available to help you prepare for the end of the PHE, some of which have been updated based on recent action by Congress.
Infection Prevention Control Guidance
Effective September 23, 2022 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated the following infection prevention and control (IPC) guidance documents for U.S. healthcare settings:
- Infection Control: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) | CDC
- Interim Guidance for Managing Healthcare Personnel with SARS-CoV-2 Infection or Exposure to SARS-CoV-2 | CDC
- Strategies to Mitigate Healthcare Personnel Staffing Shortages | CDC
These updates have been made to reflect the high levels of vaccine- and infection-induced immunity and the availability of effective treatments and prevention tools. Additionally, to streamline and consolidate existing healthcare IPC guidance, the Interim Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations to Prevent SARS-CoV-2 Spread in Nursing Homes | CDC was archived. However, relevant information for nursing homes not otherwise covered in Sections 1 and 2 of the main healthcare IPC guidance have now been incorporated into Section 3: Setting-specific considerations.
CDC recommends healthcare facilities reference updated Community Transmission metrics on a weekly basis to inform facility-level actions. Community Transmission remains the metric used to guide select actions in healthcare settings, which is different than the COVID-19 Community Levels used for non-healthcare settings. Community Transmission is used to allow for earlier intervention, before there is strain on the healthcare system, and better protect the individuals seeking medical care in these settings.
These updates provide additional protection measures for patients and healthcare workers, especially in hospitals and nursing homes, where COVID-19 is more likely to spread quickly or cause severe disease if introduced.
Refer to the guidance documents for the full updates. KDHE has adopted the CDC guidance documents in full with no modifications.
Survey & Certification Quality, Certification & Oversight Reports
August 22, 2022 - To increase transparency, The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) offers a website releasing information to access data to providers, suppliers, and stakeholders relative to survey and certification. This website provides access to the results of CMS survey and certification activity over the last ten years.