CMS announces additional actions in response to Texas weather emergency

In response to the Texas storm emergency, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services today announced further flexibilities for Texas health care facilities in addition to the existing pandemic waivers.

The new actions eliminate for people dislocated or affected by the storm the requirement for a three-day prior inpatient hospitalization to cover a skilled nursing facility stay under Medicare Part A. Texas health care providers also may submit provider-specific requests for a Section 1135 waiver or flexibility to continue access to care for beneficiaries during the winter storm emergency, CMS said.

Acting Secretary of Health and Human Services Norris Cochran last week declared a public health emergency in Texas due to the winter storm, and authorized CMS to waive or modify certain Medicare, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program requirements retroactive to Feb. 11 to the extent CMS deems necessary to ensure sufficient health care items and services to meet beneficiary needs.