COVID-19 Focused Infection Control Survey Tool for Acute and Continuing Care Providers and Suppliers (REVISED)

Mary Madison, RN, RAC-CT, CDP
Clinical Consultant – Briggs Healthcare

CMS posted the revised QSO-21-08-NLTC on Monday, September 26, 2022. This QSO Memorandum does not apply to Nursing Homes/LTC.

Ending the COVID-19 FIC Survey and Tool for Acute and Continuing Care: Returning to the Existing Standard Survey Process

CMS has always focused its regulatory and oversight efforts on ensuring the health and safety of all patients, including Medicare/Medicaid beneficiaries, yet the COVID-19 PHE warranted a rapidly implemented, more targeted approach for assessing compliance with CMS’s infection prevention and control requirements. The FIC survey and tool were developed at the beginning of the PHE to help surveyors and facilities quickly focus on and absorb the critical infection prevention and control practices for combating COVID-19. Based on stakeholder feedback and survey activity thus far, ACC facilities have developed and incorporated COVID-19 management strategies into their infrastructure and operations. There is no longer a need to continue the use of the FIC survey and tool on a national or case by case basis because surveyors will continue to assess infection prevention and control through the standard survey process, as applicable to each provider/supplier type. SAs and AOs have returned to the existing standard survey processes and continue to assess infection prevention and control by focusing on the regulatory requirements. Surveyors must no longer use the FIC survey tool and facilities should no longer use the tool for voluntary self-assessment of their ability to meet infection prevention and control priorities.

Keep reading – there’s more information and revisions in this 4-page QSO.