CMS Sets Vaccine Mandate Deadline for 24 More States

Following the announcement Thursday that healthcare providers in 24 states had been added to the federal vaccine mandate roster, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced Friday that those workers must be fully vaccinated by March 15. The 24 states joined 25 others, Washington, D.C, and territories, whose workers must have at least one COVID-19 shot by January 27, and be fully vaccinated by February 28. The mandates are based on guidance issued December 28 and follow Thursday’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling removing an earlier injunction to the mandate issued by a lower federal court.

The sweeping mandate applies to workers at hospitals and other healthcare facilities, including nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, that participate in Medicare and Medicaid programs. "Regardless of clinical responsibility or resident contact, the policies and procedures must apply to … individuals who provide care, treatment, or other services for the facility and/or its residents, under contract or by other arrangement."

The states included in the compliance memo are Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming. The mandate now extends to all U.S. states except Texas, where a preliminary injunction still applies.

The CMS memo warned that, "Facilities that do not meet these parameters could be subject to additional enforcement actions depending on the severity of the deficiency and the type of facility … (including) plans of correction, civil monetary penalties, denial of payment, termination, etc."

About the Author(s)
HBK Healthcare Solutions is a dedicated team of physician practice and living assistance facility subject matter experts serving clients in the healthcare and social assistance businesses, including private physician and dental practices and assisted living, long-term care, skilled nursing, and rehabilitation single-facility and multi-facility, multi-jurisdictional enterprises. While we remain current on the increasingly detailed reporting regulations and reimbursement requirements, we also advise our clients on a wide range of financial and operations business issues, including compensation modeling and outsourcing, so they can focus on their patients and practices.
Hill, Barth & King LLC has prepared this material for informational purposes only. Any tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or under any state or local tax law or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions regarding the matter.