CMS already has a similar but less extensive mandate to offer flu vaccinations in place.

CMS Extending Flu Vaccination Requirement

Its proposed vaccination standard covers both annual and pandemic flu and would affect Medicare and Medicaid participating hospitals of all types.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published a rule May 4 that will require all hospitals participating in Medicare or Medicaid to offer all of their patients an annual influenza vaccination, unless it is medically contraindicated or the patient or patient's representative or surrogate declines vaccination. The rule also will require certain providers and suppliers to develop policies and procedures allowing them to offer vaccinations for pandemic flu.

CMS is accepting comments on the proposal until July 5. "Due to the benefits that these provisions are estimated to offer, we plan, after consideration of any comments received, to publish the proposed regulations as final in the early Fall of 2011, with the intent that they would become effective during the 2011 through 2012 influenza season," the agency's regulatory text said.

The rule would apply to all types of participating hospitals, including short-term acute care, psychiatric, rehabilitation, long-term care, children's, and cancer hospitals; critical access hospitals; rural health clinics; federally qualified health centers; and end-stage renal disease facilities. "We have proposed this standard for these provider and supplier types because we believe that each of them have -- (a) RNs or other appropriately licensed medical personnel present when serving patients; and (b) the ability to manage vaccination and vaccine supplies with minimal additional cost or complications (for example, they already store and manage medications)," CMS stated. "We believe that the potential consequences of not finalizing this rule as soon as possible far outweigh the burden that would be imposed on providers and suppliers. We welcome your comments on these publication and implementation plans."

CMS already has a similar but less extensive mandate in place. Its October 2002 final rule for hospitals, long-term care facilities, and home health agencies removed the patient-specific physician order requirement for administering flu and pneumococcal vaccines. In October 2005, it published a final rule requiring participating nursing homes to offer all residents an annual influenza vaccination. That rule was successful because it boosted the vaccination rate in the long-term care population to 90 percent in the first year the rule was effective, according to the agency, which said the current national average for flu vaccinations administered to long-term care residents is about 91 percent.

To file a comment, visit and search for CMS-3213-P.

Download Center

  • Industrial Premium Library

    Empower your workforce with the manufacturing, industrial maintenance, operations, HSE, compliance, and professional development skills they need to complete their tasks efficiently and safely. Not only will you boost productivity, reliability, skills, and morale but you’ll also onboard faster, and retain your best employees while meeting regulatory standards. Vector Solutions offers over 1,800 award-winning eLearning courses designed to keep your employees safe, transfer knowledge of fundamentals, and develop industry and job-specific skills that reduce downtime, maintenance costs and more.

  • Safety Metrics & Insights Webinar

    EHS professionals have been tackling the subject of how to best measure performance for many years. Lagging indicators like the Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) and Days Away Restricted Transfer Rate (DART) are a good place to start, but you shouldn’t forget about the leading indicators that your workforce does every day to prevent incidents from occurring. Learn about some of the most common KPIs of safety programs and how Vector EHS Management software can be used to track these metrics in this webinar.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively. Download this guide for details on risk matrix calculations including severity, probability, and risk assessment.

  • OSHA Recordkeeping Guide

    In case you missed it, OSHA recently initiated an enforcement program to identify employers who fail to electronically submit Form 300A recordkeeping data to the agency. When it comes to OSHA recordkeeping, there are always questions regarding the requirements and ins and outs. This guide is here to help! We’ll explain reporting, recording, and online reporting requirements in detail.

  • Safety Metrics Guide

    Is your company leveraging its safety data and analytics to maintain a safe workplace? With so much data available, where do you start? This downloadable guide will give you insight on helpful key performance indicators (KPIs) you should track for your safety program

  • Vector Solutions

Featured Whitepaper

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - September 2022

    September 2022


    • ESG
      EHS Will Guide Future ESG Success for Many Organizations
      Handling Material Handlers: Training Beyond PIT Requirements
      The Missing Link with EHS Software
      Noise Surveys from the Trenches
    View This Issue