Please share this individuals in the following roles:

  • CEO, COO, CNO, Chief Medical Officer
  • Quality Director, Director of Surgery Services, Director of Outpatient Services
  • Infection Control Coordinator, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Accreditation Coordinator

CMS QSO-20-22 Guidance for Infection Control and Prevention of Coronavirus Disease (COVID19) in Outpatient Settings: FAQs and Considerations

Key points: This CMS QSO Memo (March 30, 2020) provides guidance and recommendations to mitigate transmission including screening, restricting visitors, cleaning and disinfection, and possible closures, as well as supply scarcity guidance and FDA recommendations.

Links are provided throughout the memo to various resources from CDC and CMS related to COVID-19.

CMS is encouraging healthcare facilities to monitor the CDC’s website for up-to-date information and resources to mitigate COVID-19 transmission and to contact the local health department for questions or when suspecting that a patient or healthcare provider has COVID-19.

Healthcare facilities should have plans for monitoring staff with exposure to patients with known or suspected COVID-19.

CMS recommended on March 18, 2020 that elective surgeries, non-essential medical, surgical, and dental procedures be delayed during the COVID-19 outbreak. Recommendations are based on preserving resources, which further encourages facilities to redistribute available PPE, bed capacity, and ventilators to the local community when possible.

In this publication, CMS addresses:

  1. Actions facilities should implement to promote early recognition and management of patients, staff and visitors.
  2. Recommendations on monitoring for COVID-19, managing symptomatic staff, and restricting staff, including guidance for determining when staff can return to work.
  3. Visitation restrictions
  4. Guidance on cleaning and disinfecting the facility, including environmental surfaces, medical devices and equipment utilizing disinfectants on List N of the EPA website.
  5. Guidance on remaining open or closing a facility during the COVID-19 outbreak.
  6. Discussion of cessation of business/voluntary termination if business is closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  7. Discussion of CMS activated Section 1135 Social Security Act waivers to help ease certain requirements for impacted providers.
  8. CMS recommendations for facilities to take actions to mitigate any supply shortages, take steps to obtain necessary supplies, and identify safe alternatives for patient care based on CDC guidelines.
  9. Expanded FDA approval for emergency use authorization to all healthcare providers to use certain filtering facepiece respirators during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Are any HFAP Standards affected? This is provided for information only. If your organization is surveyed during the COVID-19 pandemic, HFAP surveyors will survey the organization using the most up-to-date CMS requirements and 1135 waivers approved for the organization or state.

Effective date: March 30, 2020

Read the entire memo.