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Rural Health
News by Topic: Legislation and regulations

May 13, 2021 - Notice of interim final rule with comment period from the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services revising the infection control requirements the long-term care (LTC) facilities and intermediate care facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities (ICFs-IID) must meet to participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs. This interim final rule aims to reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2 infections by requiring COVID-19 vaccine education for LTC facility residents, ICF-IID clients, and staff serving both populations, and by requiring that COVID-19 vaccines be offered to all residents, clients, and staff when available. This interim final rule also requires LTC facilities to report the COVID-19 vaccination status of residents and staff to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This rule is effective May 21, 2021. Comments are due by June 12, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
May 10, 2021 - Notice of proposed rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding changes to the hospital inpatient prospective payment system (IPPS) for operating and capital-related costs of acute care hospitals for fiscal year 2022. Contains details of changes impacting Critical Access Hospital (CAH); Medicare graduate medical education for teaching hospitals, including how to distribute additional slots for rural residency training programs; inpatient hospital services provided by long-term care hospitals; quality reporting programs; and changes related to the COVID-19 pandemic, among other things. Comments are due by June 28, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
May 10, 2021 - Notice of interim final rule with comment period from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) amending regulations to allow hospitals with a rural redesignation under the Social Security Act to reclassify through the Medicare Geographic Classification Review Board (MGCRB) using the rural reclassified area as the geographic area in which the hospital is located. These changes align CMS policy with the decision in Bates County Memorial Hospital v. Azar, effective with reclassifications beginning with fiscal year (FY) 2023. This interim final rule is effective May 10, 2021. Comments are due by June 28, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
May 5, 2021 - Notice of final rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) related to risk adjustment, user fees, and cost-sharing for state and federal-based exchanges; special enrollment periods; direct enrollment entities; income verification by exchanges; and more. This final rule is effective July 6, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
May 3, 2021 - Notice of final rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) extending the length of the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) model through December 31, 2024, by adding an additional 3 performance years. This final rule revises certain aspects of the CJR model including the episode of care definition, the target price calculation, the reconciliation process, the beneficiary notice requirements, and the appeals process. This final rule also extends the additional flexibilities provided to participant hospitals related to certain Medicare program rules. Includes information regarding rural hospital participation and time frames in which they can participate in the CJR model. This final rule is effective July 2, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
May 3, 2021 - Describes bipartisan legislation, Strengthening Rural Health Clinics Act of 2021, that fixes a technical issue to protect existing Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) from sudden, unexpected Medicare payment rate changes that were part of the December 2020 COVID-19 relief bill.
Source: The Daily Yonder
Apr 27, 2021 - Notice of final rule with comment period from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Business-Cooperative Service (RBCS) regarding the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). This rule removes the provisions relating to guaranteed loans, makes revisions to enhance program delivery and customer service for the REAP program, and incorporates changes to support a greater distribution of funds and processing and servicing clarifications. This rule is effective July 26, 2021. Comments are due by June 28, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
Apr 26, 2021 - The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announces the continuation of the May 11, 2018 interim final rule. The provisions adopted in the interim final rule will continue until May 11, 2022. The timeline for publication of the final rule is also extended until May 11, 2022.
Source: Federal Register
Apr 19, 2021 - Notice of final rule from the U.S. State Department changing the certification authority for alien physicians from the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) to the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). This rule is effective May 19, 2021.
Source: Federal Register
Apr 15, 2021 - Notice of a proposed rule from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services seeking comments on updates to the prospective payment system (PPS) for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) for fiscal year 2022. Among other things, this rule includes proposals to rebase and revise the SNF market basket, suppress the use of the SNF readmission measure for scoring and payment adjustment purposes in the FY 2022 SNF Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) program due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, and update to the diagnosis code mappings used under the Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM). Includes rural considerations throughout. Comments are due by June 7, 2021.
Source: Federal Register