CMS Discharge Planning Final Rule Empowers Patients

CMS Discharge Planning Final Rule Empowers Patients

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The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published a final rule in the September 30, 2019 Federal Register that revises requirements for discharge planning for inpatient rehabilitation hospitals, hospitals (including acute, children’s, long term acute care, and critical access), and home health agencies. Each of these facilities must meet these requirements as a condition to participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs. In addition to this final rule requiring the discharge planning process to focus on the patient’s goals of care and treatment preferences, it also empowers patients to make informed decisions about their care as they are discharged from acute care to post-acute care (PAC).

The final rule includes a new requirement that sends necessary medical information to the receiving facility or appropriate PAC provider after a patient is discharged from the hospital or transferred to another PAC provider. In addition, hospitals must ensure and support patients’ rights to access their medical records in the form and format requested by the patient.

These regulations are effective on November 29, 2019. Contact RCPA Rehabilitation Services Director Melissa Dehoff with questions.

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