CHA News Article

CMS Issues Proposed Rule Revising Discharge Planning Requirements

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has issued the attached proposed rule revising the discharge planning requirements for hospitals — including long-term care hospitals and inpatient rehabilitation facilities, critical access hospitals (CAHs) and home health agencies — as required by the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation (IMPACT) Act of 2014. Under the proposed rule, hospitals and CAHs would be required to develop a discharge plan within 24 hours of admission or registration and complete a discharge plan before the patient is discharged home or transferred to another facility. This would apply to all inpatients and certain types of outpatients, including patients receiving observation services, those undergoing surgery or other same-day procedures where anesthesia or moderate sedation is used, and emergency department patients who have been identified by a practitioner as needing a discharge plan.

In addition, hospitals, CAHs and home health agencies would have to:

  • Provide discharge instructions to patients who are discharged home (proposed for hospitals and CAHs only);
  • Have a medication reconciliation process with the goal of improving patient safety by enhancing medication management (proposed for hospitals and CAHs only);
  • For patients who are transferred to another facility, send specific medical information to the receiving facility; and
  • Establish a post-discharge follow-up process (proposed for hospitals and CAHs only).

CHA is currently reviewing the proposed rule and will provide members with a more detailed summary in the coming weeks. The proposed rule will have a 60-day comment period and is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register on Nov. 3.