Responding last month to an AHA letter, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services said it will continue to remain flexible in its approach to surveys if a hospital experiences a COVID-19 surge. 

“Hospitals in these circumstances should notify their State Survey Agency as soon possible, who will then coordinate with their CMS Location to consider a short-term, hospital-specific survey suspension,” CMS said. “This communication should be prior to any survey activity. Once surveyors are onsite at a hospital, they will not be recalled.”

In evaluating whether to temporarily suspend survey activities, CMS said it will consider whether the hospital has notified the appropriate state public health agency and activated its emergency preparedness plan, and the proportion of hospital staff and resources dedicated to managing COVID-19 patients.   
 

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