KHA Victory on Medical Detox Licensure Regulations
Tuesday, May 28, 2019 3:25 PM
Recently, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) proposed changes to the licensure regulations that govern Medical Detoxification Services. These changes would have restricted the ability of hospitals to offer this needed service, particularly at a time when we are combating the opioid epidemic.
KHA discussed these concerns with the OIG and submitted comments, after consulting with the KHA Psychiatric and Chemical Dependency Forum and individual members. KHA is pleased that the OIG agreed with all of KHA’s recommendations and, as a result, they will not finalize the problematic changes.
Specifically, as a result of KHA’s comments, the OIG is eliminating the proposed requirement for medical detoxification services to be provided only by a hospital with chemical dependency (CD) treatment beds. Instead, the rule will maintain the status quo by allowing medical detox services to continue to be provided in any of the following facilities: a chemical dependency treatment program, a general acute care hospital or a licensed psychiatric hospital. The regulation does update the requirements for providing detox services. However, requiring patients to receive medical detoxification services in a licensed chemical dependency bed or only in a hospital with chemical dependency beds was too restrictive, given that there are only seven hospitals with licensed CD beds and it is standard practice for medical detoxification protocols to be initiated on medical/surgical patients hospitalized for other reasons. The OIG’s proposed restriction also created issues related to reimbursement if all detoxification had to be rendered in a CD bed as opposed to an acute bed or, for psychiatric hospitals, in a psychiatric bed.
Additionally, the OIG also agreed to remove a proposed requirement for medical detoxification services to provide daily individual and group counseling. This will assure that acute care hospitals can continue to provide medical detox services.
The changes must be reviewed by two legislative committees before they become effective. KHA anticipates that the amended regulation will take effect in July.
If you have any questions, please contact Nancy Galvagni at KHA (firstname.lastname@example.org).