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The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has waived certain requirements in order to allow hospitals and health systems to expand the health care workforce. The waivers apply nationwide and are retroactive to March 1, 2020.
A summary of the waivers is available here: https://www.cms.gov/files/document/summary-covid-19-emergency-declaration-waivers.pdf.
Included is a waiver of the requirement that an entity’s governing body must review medical staff appointments and renewals prior to a provider’s exercise of privileges. Under the waiver, physicians are allowed to continue to practice, or to begin practice, as part of a medical staff prior to governing body approval. Specifically, CMS is waiving §482.22(a) (1)-(4) regarding details of the credentialing and privileging process.
With respect to appointments and renewals, the medical staff should follow its own bylaws and should consider provisions that permit emergency or temporary appointments. Colorado statutes and regulations requiring governing body approval should also be considered.
Contact Caplan & Earnest with Questions
If you have questions about CMS waivers, please contact Meghan Pound or Laura Wassmuth in Caplan & Earnest’s Health Law practice. Our attorneys continue to closely follow these developments, as well as many others related to changing laws, regulations and rules relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.