OCR Issues Guidance on Civil Rights Protections Prohibiting Discrimination During COVID-19

On Monday, the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued guidance for health care providers on complying with federal civil rights laws during the COVID-19 public health emergency. The guidance focuses on prohibitions against discrimination based on race, color, and national origin, and includes many practical considerations and actions hospitals can take to ensure equitable access to care. 

Attorney General Opinion Clarifies Effective Date for Filing 805 Report

On April 20, the California Attorney General issued a published opinion clarifying the time period within which a Business and Professions Code section 805 report must be filed. Section 805 requires a report to be filed with the relevant state healing arts licensing agency “within 15 days after the effective date” of certain actions taken by a peer review body against specified health care practice licentiates. 

Webinar to Cover Crisis Care Guidelines

On April 19, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) released the California SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic: Health Care Surge Crisis Care Guidelines. In a CHA members-only webinar, senior leadership from CDPH will review the new guidelines, provide insights into their development, and explain how they can inform real-time clinical decisions. Webinar details will be available in CHA’s Coronavirus Response newsletter and on CHA’s education web page later this week.

Privacy Breach Reports Due Feb. 29

Federal law requires hospitals and other Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-covered entities to report all 2019 HIPAA privacy breaches affecting fewer than 500 patients to the Office for Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) by Feb. 29.

CDPH Issues Notices on New Laws Requiring Hospital Compliance

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has issued guidance, in three different All Facilities Letters (AFLs), about new laws that apply to hospitals and health facilities: one regarding medical exams of sexual assault victims, one on employees’ rights during a CDPH investigation or inspection, and one on written notice to patients about their right to be free of discrimination.