CMS Publishes Revised Guidance for Focused Infection Control Surveys (QSO-21-08-NLTC)

February 18, 2022

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued revised QSO-21-08-NLTC (PDF). It informs surveyors of acute and continuing care facilities, including home health and hospice agencies, that use of the special COVID-19 focused infection control surveys and tools are no longer needed on a national basis.

Surveyors will continue to check infection prevention and control elements related to COVID-19 through the existing survey process. Lessons learned about infection control oversight during the public health emergency will be incorporated. State survey agencies and accrediting organizations can still use the targeted FIC survey on a case by case basis, if warranted. HCSSAs should still adhere to basic COVID-19 infection prevention principles consistent with national standards of practice. Surveyors are expected to follow basic infection control practices such as:

  • Hand hygiene
  • Wearing masks
  • The use of other personal protective equipment as appropriate