Series: Part 4 of 6
Key Factors for Emergency Preparedness

This is the fourth of six updates in a Simione series on the NEW Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Conditions of Participation (CoPs) for Home Health. Home health agencies must take steps now to ensure compliance with these important requirements by the implementation date of July 13, 2017. 

The final rule, Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers (CMS-3178-F), establishes national emergency preparedness requirements for Medicare- and Medicaid-participating providers and suppliers to ensure adequate emergency plans are developed and in place to address natural and manmade disasters.  These plans must also coordinate with federal, state, tribal, regional and local emergency preparedness systems.

Historically, these regulations were developed based on prior disasters such as Hurricane Katrina.  Multiple gaps were identified following this and other major disasters having a negative impact on health care recipients.  Shortfalls were identified related to communication and coordination with other systems of care for local jurisdictions, contingency planning, and training of personnel.

The components of this final rule have been incorporated into the Home Health CoPs and will be found at CFR 484.201.  Home health agencies must prepare for these new requirements by developing an Emergency Preparedness program and plan to ensure their patients, caregivers and staff needs are met in the safest manner possible in the event of a disaster. 

An emergency plan, in the most basic sense, is a guiding document that outlines in detail the systems and protocols that an organization has in place to:  

  • ensure the safety of staff and patients
  • operate within the larger emergency management system, and
  • maintain continuity of services to patients during and after an emergency  

 Watch for Part 5 of 6 on HH CoPs the week of March 13, which will review Personnel Qualifications: Leadership, Skilled Professional & Home Health Aide Services 

Contact us at 844-215-8822 or


March 24, 2017 @ 2-3 PM Eastern

Don’t Run from the CoPs:  A Simione Guide for Patient Rights, Care Planning & Care Coordination

March 31, 2017 @ 2-3 PM Eastern

Don’t Run from the CoPs:  A Simione Guide for QAPI, Infection Prevention/Control & Emergency Preparedness

April 6, 2017 @ 2-3 PM Eastern

Don’t Run from the CoPs:  A Simione Guide for Personnel Qualifications & Organization & Administration of Services

Home Health Medicare  Conditions of Participation (CoPs) 

The final rule can be viewed at the Federal Register website at 

Simione’s experts can assist with all aspects of preparation for the new CoPs by assessing current home health programs and operations.  Our team will establish an implementation and oversight plan that best meets your organization’s needs, supporting policy and procedure development, education and training, and program development in accordance with applicable regulations and industry best practices.  Whether you need to complete your readiness checklist, develop an integrated care process or improve your human resource practices, Simione is ready to support your success with CoPs.