CDC Issues Public Health Emergency Planning Guide for LTC, Home Health and Hospice Providers
March 1, 2016 08:22 AM
This Long-Term, Home Health, and Hospice Care Planning Guide for Public Health Emergencies was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Healthcare Preparedness Activity (HPA), with input from stakeholders from long term care facilities and home health and hospice providers. Through stakeholder meetings, for which the National Association for Home Care & Hospice was a participant, the CDC was able to identify the gaps and issues these sectors face during a public health emergency, and to develop tools to help them address these gaps and issues.
The Planning Guide focuses on six topic areas identified by meeting stakeholders: situational awareness, continuity of operations, facility or agency operations, and crisis standards of care, staffing, and fatality management. Each topic area is addressed using the terminology and the framework outlined in the National Response Planand the National Response Framework, which are Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) documents prescribing the national response to manmade emergencies and natural disasters. Additionally, each topic area is presented in a manner that allows the user to develop needed sections for the facility or agency's public health emergency preparedness and response plan.
Prior to the publication of the Planning Guide, CMS issued a proposed rule that "would establish national emergency preparedness requirements for Medicare- and Medicaid-participating providers and suppliers to ensure that they adequately plan for both natural and man-made disasters, and coordinate with federal, state, tribal, regional, and local emergency preparedness systems.” Although there is no way to predict exactly what CMS will require in the final rule, the authors believe the Planning Guide, for the most part, is in alignment with CMS's intentions.
In addition, the authors are seeking feedback in order to improve the Planning Guide. Please contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your comments.