Penalty delay for some tags

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Long-term care providers have 18 months to adapt to some of the Phase 2 requirements of participation without facing penalties, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced in late November.

CMS had previously announced postponement of enforcement penalties for a year, but the 18-month enforcement moratorium applies to a few “unique and separate” F-Tags.

These are F-655 - Baseline Care Plan, F-740 - Behavioral Health Services, F-741 - Sufficient/Competent Direct Care/ Access Staff-Behavioral Health, F-758 - Psychotropic Medications related to PRN Limitations, F-838 - Facility Assessment, F-881 - Antibiotic Stewardship Program, F-865 - QAPI Program and Plan related to the development of the QAPI Plan, and F-926 - Smoking Policies.

Noncompliance with these tags will still be cited by surveyors, CMS noted. The penalty moratorium, along with a delay on Nursing Home Compare's health inspection rating, reflects a “temporary need to accommodate” major regulatory changes, CMS said.