CMS updates operations manual and F-tags for facility closures

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services released operations manual updates, including new F-tags for facility closures, last week. The updates include amendments to Appendix PP of the SOM, with revisions to tags F203 and F204. Additional tags, F523 and F524, were also added.

CMS released a final ruling in March, stating that long-term care facilities must notify the federal government, state survey agencies, state long-term care ombudsmen, residents and residents' legal representatives at least 60 days in advance of any facility closure. The interim advanced copy of the manual update clarifies this ruling and fully develops it.

For instance, tag F523 states that in addition to notifying all involved parties, administrators must ensure no new residents are admitted on or after the date of the notification being submitted. Administrators must also include a pre-approved plan for the transfer and relocation of residents by a state-specified date.

A detailed process for providing notification of the closure to staff, vendors, contractors and unions should also be outlined, as well as provisions for ongoing operations and facility management. Examples include the continuation of appropriate staffing to meet residents' needs, the ongoing assessment of each resident's care needs, the ongoing provision of necessary services and care, and the labeling, safekeeping and appropriate transfer of residents' personal belongings.

Click to read all the updates and amendments.