CMS Emergency Preparedness Requirements for
Long Term Care Centers
Requirement: Emergency Plans
Develop a plan based on a risk assessment using an “all hazards” approach, which is an integrated approach focusing on capacities and capabilities critical to preparedness for a full spectrum of emergencies and disasters. The plan must be updated annually. Must account for missing residents (existing requirement).
SafePlans’ ERIP system streamlines the emergency plan development process. With ERIP, plans are easier to complete and maintain. Plans are accessible via secure Internet, print and the ERIP mobile app.
Requirement: Policies and Procedures
System to track on-duty staff & sheltered patients during the emergency. Tracking during and after the emergency applies to on-duty staff and sheltered residents.
ERIP brings policies out of the typewriter age and into the modern era. Create, share and collaborate online, via the ERIP app and of course via PDF documents suitable for printing. As a procedure is updated, all stakeholders can be alerted via email, push notification on the ERIP app and text message.
Requirement: Communications Plan
Develop and maintain an emergency preparedness communication plan that complies with both federal and state laws. Patient care must be well coordinated within the facility, across health care providers and with state and local public health departments and emergency systems. The plan must include contact information for other hospitals and CAHs; method for sharing information and medical documentation for patients. In the event of an evacuation, method to release patient information consistent with the HIPAA Privacy Rule.
A Communications Plan developed in ERIP insures all stakeholders have access to an interactive communications plan that may be linked to communications resources such as mass notification systems.
Requirement: Training and Testing
Develop and maintain training and testing programs, including initial training in policies and procedures and demonstrate knowledge of emergency procedures and provide training
at least annually.
Also annually participate in:
• A full-scale exercise that is community- or facility-based
• An additional exercise of the facility’s choice.
ERIP includes eLearning courses for staff and web-based tabletop scenarios. All staff training may be scheduled and tracked in ERIP.
Develop policies and procedures that address the provision of alternate sources of energy to maintain:
• Temperatures to protect patient health and safety
• Emergency lighting
• Fire detection, extinguishing, and alarm systems & Generators
• Sewage & Waste Disposal
• Share with resident / family / representative appropriate information from emergency plan.
ERIP’s assessment module allows the tracking of all requirements. Assessments can be conducted within the ERIP app.
Training and exercise requirements of the regulation call for individual-facility and/or full-scale community-based exercises. In January of 2017, CMS issued the below examples of exercise considerations:
• Cyber Security Attack
• Single-Facility Disaster (power-outage)
• Medical Surge
(i.e. community disaster leading to influx of patients)
• Infectious Disease Outbreak
• Active Shooter