September 10, 2021
Biden Administration COVID-19 Action Plan Will Require Vaccination for Many ASCs
On Thursday, September 9, the Biden administration released a comprehensive COVID-19 Action Plan which contains a six-pronged national strategy to combat the spread of the coronavirus. The plan contains a section titled Requiring COVID-19 Vaccinations for Over 17 Million Health Care Workers at Medicare and Medicaid Participating Hospitals and Other Health Care Settings. In this section, the administration announces that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will take “action to require COVID-19 vaccinations for workers in most health care settings that receive Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement, including…ambulatory surgical settings.” The requirement will apply to clinical staff, as well as third-party contractors, volunteers and staff not involved directly in patient care. According to the CMS press release, the official requirement will come via an interim final rule with comment period (IFC) in October and will likely be similar to the vaccine mandate for nursing home staff issued on August 18.
Another section of the action plan announces a requirement for all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workers are vaccinated or produce a negative test result on a weekly basis. This requirement will be issued by the US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
ASCA will continue to update members as the details of the new requirements are announced. Please visit ASCA’s COVID-19 Resource Center for up-to-date news and state-specific resources.