Earlier this year, CMS prioritized its inspection protocols for nursing homes to allow inspectors to focus on the most serious health and safety threats like infectious diseases and abuse. Since March 4, 2020, CMS and the state survey agencies have completed infection control surveys in over 15,276 (99.2 percent) of nursing homes. These surveys have resulted in more than 180 immediate jeopardy level findings for infection control, which is triple the rate of such deficiencies found in 2019. Immediate Jeopardy represents a situation in which a nursing home’s noncompliance with CMS requirements of participation has caused or is likely to cause serious injury, serious harm, serious impairment, or death to a resident. CMS has imposed CMPs for these violations totaling nearly $10 million to nursing homes in 22 states. The average CMP imposed was $55,000.
CMS and the CDC developed a nationwide reporting system that requires Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing homes to report COVID-19 cases and deaths, among other information, directly to the CDC. The majority of nursing homes are reporting data as required. As of August 3, 2020, over 99 percent of facilities are reporting data. However, for those nursing homes that have not reported data or have lapsed, CMS is taking enforcement action. As of August 3, 2020, CMS has also cited more than 3,300 deficiencies and imposed more than $5.5 million in CMPs to nursing homes for failing to report required COVID-19-related data to the CDC.