CMS shocker: Survey revamp

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A new survey process will start in November 2017 as part of the new final rule for nursing homes, a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services official said in late September.

The revamped survey process will start with the second of three phases instituting the 713-page rule, said Evan Shulman, CMS Deputy Director in the Division of Nursing Homes, Survey and Certification Group, speaking in Baltimore in late September. 

The first phase, which mostly reflects existing requirements, starts Nov. 28, with the second phase starting next year.

“There are a lot of new requirements, but most of the regulations are not new,” Shulman noted, adding that stakeholder comments compelled the phase-in strategy.

Surveyors will be trained on their new survey process in July 2017.

“The new survey process leverages best practices of both [the QIS and the traditional survey],” he said. It will be computer-based. 

New F-tags will be effective in November 2017, along with changes in the State Operations Manual.