A nursing home in California received two F-Tags in a survey completed in November 2020 for violating F 836 and F 880, the latter of which requires facilities to “establish and maintain an infection prevention and control program designed to provide a safe, sanitary and comfortable environment and to help prevent the development and transmission of communicable diseases and infections.”
The nursing home was placed in immediate jeopardy after the surveyor found the facility had failed to implement interventions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 infection and thus threatened the health and safety of the residents and staff.
Eventually, the immediate jeopardy was lifted after the facility submitted an acceptable plan of action to correct the deficient practices and the surveyor confirmed that the plan of action was being implemented. Under the plan of action the facility said it would group residents into three separate cohorts based on the recommendations in AFL 20-74, which says that if any residents or healthcare personnel in a particular unit or wing of a facility are diagnosed as COVID-19 positive, then all residents in that unit or wing are considered exposed and should remain in their current rooms unless sufficient private rooms are available.
AFL 20-74 also calls for avoiding any movements of residents that could lead to new exposures, such as moving a resident into a room where one of the new roommates is subsequently found to have unidentified asymptomatic infection.
Apparently, the reason why the California nursing home received an F 836 F-Tag for failing to compliance with California rules and regulations regarding COVID-19. F 836 says that every facility must “operate and provide services in compliance with all applicable Federal, State, and local laws, regulations, and codes, and with accepted professional standards and principles that apply to professionals providing services in such a facility.”
In particular, according to Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) Coronavirus Disease 2019 Guidelines for Preventing and Managing COVID- 19 in Skilled Nursing Facilities for COVID- 19 Prevention- General and Administrative Practices, facilities must conduct symptom and temperature screening for all staff twice daily—once prior to coming to work and second at the end of the shift—and records should be kept of these staff temperature check. However, the surveyor found that after reviewing the facility's employee COVID- 19 screening log from the red zone—the unit where COVID- 19 confirmed residents were located—several staff members did not record COVID- 19 screening and temperature checks at the end of their shifts.
It’s crucial for nursing homes and other skilled nursing facilities (SNF’s) to keep abreast of rules and regulations at all levels, including federal, state, and local. In the case of this California nursing home, for example, the surveyor gave the facility an F-Tag on grounds that it violated Los Angeles county COVID-19 guidelines. The reason why we here at Clearpol created Policies.ai software is to empower SNF’s to take a proactive approach to healthcare compliance by giving them text and analysis of the myriad rules and regulations at the federal, state, and local levels. Check out our website here for more info on how you can join us and keep on top of healthcare compliance.