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CMS Delays Enforcement of New Requirement on Governing Bodies

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In response to requests for clarification and guidance, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is reconsidering the new requirement that hospitals include a member of the medical staff on their governing bodies.

The requirement was included in a package of revisions to the hospital Conditions of Participation, which went into effect July 16.  In a memorandum, CMS instructed state survey agency directors not to cite hospitals for violations of this requirement and advised accrediting organizations not to revise their standards or survey processes related to this requirement.

“CMS is presently reconsidering this policy in light of the numerous comments that have been received since publication of the rule,” the memorandum states. “Given the complexity of the issues that have been raised, we are carefully reviewing the comments and will reconsider this requirement in future rulemaking.”

The requirement was included in the text of the final rule but has not been published as part of the proposed changes to the Conditions of Participation. As a result, CMS did not solicit or receive comments on the requirement prior to its publication.  Contact: Karen Roach

Published August 16, 2012