Nursing homes will be required to report confirmed cases of Covid-19 to families, residents, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to a new directive issued Sunday by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
Current CDC guidelines say nursing homes should notify state or local health departments about residents or staff with suspected or confirmed Covid-19, the disease resulting from the novel coronavirus. These data aren’t currently collected by the CDC, the CMS, or the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The CMS and the CDC will soon provide nursing homes with specific direction on standard formatting and frequency for reporting this information, which is now provided optionally.
“Nursing homes have been ground zero for COVID-19,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma in a release. “Nursing home reporting to the CDC is a critical component of the go-forward national COVID-19 surveillance system and to efforts to reopen America.”
“Scientific data derived from solid surveillance is a key element of recommendations to protect Americans, particularly our most vulnerable, from the devastating impact of COVID-19,” said CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield.
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