The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today released a final rule bolstering emergency preparedness requirements for hospitals and other critical facilities. Recent national disasters prompted the agency to increase requirements for health care facilities in the Medicare Conditions of Participation. In today’s rule, CMS finalized its proposal requiring hospitals to conduct a comprehensive all-hazard risk assessment and act to mitigate the risks identified and to work with their community to be ready. The agency provided flexibility to hospitals in locating new generators and not requiring relocation of existing generators. Further, CMS will not require increased hours of testing, as it had originally proposed because it noted there was no evidence such testing would improve facilities’ ability to deal with a disaster, such as Hurricane Sandy. “We are pleased that CMS has taken a commonsense approach to ensuring patients continue to be cared for in times of disaster,” said Ashley Thompson, AHA senior vice president for public policy analysis and development. AHA members will receive a detailed advisory on the final rule in the coming weeks.