News Details

Safe Food for Seniors Regulatory Breakthrough

Published on Jul 23, 2015

On July 16, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) “Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Reform of Requirements for Long-Term Care Facilities.”

In a wonderful turn of events, one of the proposed reforms is training and certification standards for the director of food services in LTC facilities that reflect what ANFP has been advocating for all these years!  ANFP filed comments (under the name Dietary Mangers Association) with CMS in 2010 and again in 2011 in response to Federal Register notices concerning the Prospective Payment System for Skilled Nursing Facilities.  CMS acknowledged the comments and opened the door a bit by referring them to its Survey and Certification staff.  This was followed by establishing a contact in that office and directing another letter to staff making the case for the Safe Food for Seniors initiative.  Thus, this regulatory breakthrough has been five years in the making from the first DMA/ANFP comments that were submitted to CMS.  It validates our two-pronged legislative/regulatory strategy and is a tremendous reward for staying the course!

This is what came across my radar from my MDS world and explains very well the HUGE impact these proposed rules will make for our Seniors and the care we provide them!

 On Monday, July 13, 2015, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a preliminary copy of the proposed Reforms for Medicare/Medicaid LTC Requirements. These significantly amend the requirements for long-term care (LTC) facilities that participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs. The 403-page document outlines the proposed changes, which, the rule states, are targeted to “achieve broad-based improvements both in the quality of health care furnished through federal programs, and in patient safety, while at the same time reducing procedural burdens on providers.” These regulations represent the most comprehensive update to LTC facilities’ conditions of participation since 1991. The key drivers of these new rules, CMS states, are innovations in resident care and quality practices, more diverse and clinically complex residents, revised clinical standards of practice, and evidence-based research.-AANAC posting 7-16-2015

 The section that references our “Safe Food” legislation is below, keep in mind this is just a few excerpts of the 403 pages, but what a powerful & positive addition to the regs!

Food and nutrition services (§483.60)

· Director of Food Service: Adds to the requirement for the designation
of a director of  food and nutrition service that the person serving in this
position be a certified dietary  manager, certified food service manager,
or have a certification for food service management and safety from a national
certifying body or have an associate’s or higher degree in food service
management or hospitality from an accredited institution of higher learning.
In states that have established standards for food service managers, this
person must meet state requirements for food service managers.

For a full reference to (§483.60) CLICK HERE

ONCE again I want to thank everyone past and present on the Legislative Committee for laying such a good foundation that made our efforts pay off! We will be watching and waiting out the 60 day comment period that ends mid -September. Craig, Thad and Joyce will be keeping close tabs on things and you all should be keeping your communications open within your states, communities and trade associations for any feedback that comes your way! Let’s watch this legislation unfold to cover the needs of many and the position CDM’s will be playing in making it happen!!!

Barbara Thomsen, CDM, CFPP
Chair, Legislative Committee
Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals

406 Surrey Woods Dr
St. Charles, IL 60174
800.323.1908
info@ANFPonline.org

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