Washington, D.C. — Dr. David Gifford, Senior Vice President of Quality and Regulatory Affairs and Chief Medical Officer at the American Health Care Association (AHCA), made the following statement regarding the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed rule on Requirements of Participation:
“We are closely reviewing the proposed rule in more detail. We are pleased that CMS preserved important advances in these regulations such as those addressing infection control and prevention and resident rights. At the same time, CMS has recognized the need to eliminate regulations that result in unnecessary paperwork. Many of the changes in today’s proposed rule will allow caregivers to devote more time to resident care instead of completing paperwork that does not help keep residents safe and healthy.
“Importantly, CMS has proposed delaying implementation of some Phase 3 requirements for one year from when this rule is finalized. This would include components of the Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement (QAPI) requirements and the Compliance and Ethics Program requirements. However, there is no delay until the rule is finalized.
“Nursing homes are already providing quality care each day. CMS measures show improvement on 18 of 24 key areas. Unnecessary use of antipsychotic medications is declining. More people are returning home after successful rehabilitation.
“More regulations are not the way to incentivize quality improvement. This rule recognizes that more paperwork and administrative requirements takes time away from nurses who want to spend more time at the bedside.”
The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represents more than 14,000 non-profit and proprietary skilled nursing centers, assisted living communities, sub-acute centers and homes for individuals with intellectual and development disabilities. By delivering solutions for quality care, AHCA/NCAL aims to improve the lives of the nearly 5 million seniors and individuals with disabilities who receive long term or post-acute care in our facilities each year. For more information, please visit www.ahcancal.org or www.ncal.org.