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CMS Removes COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements for Health Care Workers

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a final rule withdrawing the COVID-19 vaccination requirements for workers in most health care settings that receive Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement. They include but are not limited to hospitals, dialysis facilities, ambulatory surgical settings, home health agencies, and long-term care facilities.   

CMS eliminates the long-term care facility COVID-19 testing requirements but does finalize requirements for these facilities to provide education about COVID-19 vaccines and to offer COVID-19 vaccines to residents, clients, and staff. 

CMS aims to use quality reporting and value-based incentive programs to encourage health care facilities to practice preventative measures against COVID-19. Quality measures assessing the proportion of health care workers vaccinated for COVID-19 remain in place.