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[May 26, 2020] NHSN Reporting Update and FAQs

Posted May 26, 20203 min Read

Regulatory & Clinical

As a reminder, nursing facilities were required to submit their first set of data to NHSN by 11:59 pm on May 17, 2020, to be compliant with the Interim Final Rule, a summary of which can be found here.  Nursing facilities may choose to report more frequently, but must report at least once every seven (7) days.

The initial two-week grace period ended at 11:59 pm on May 24, 2020, and nursing facilities that fail to begin reporting after the third week, ending at 11:59 pm on May 31, 2020, will receive a warning letter.  Nursing facilities that have not started reporting in the NHSN system by 11:59 pm on June 7, 2020, will be assessed a civil monetary penalty of $1,000, which will increase $500 per week.

NHSN’s most up-to-date instructions can be found here, and it is important to note that when reporting, every field must have an answer entered or it will be counted as missing data.  Even if the answer is nothing or zero, you must enter “0” in the data field.  Any answers without data will be flagged.  A nursing facility can identify missing data by reviewing the calendar view page.  Any pathway that is incomplete will be highlighted as a tan color.  Pathways highlighted as green indicate all questions were answered.  NHSN does not currently send notices for incomplete data.  Nursing facilities are therefore encouraged to review the calendar view to ensure all four pathways are highlighted in green.  Nursing facilities that are experiencing delays in uploading data are encouraged to keep all documentation of communication with NHSN.

Nursing facilities are also reporting that they are not receiving the “Agreement to Participate and Consent” email.  If this is occurring, please follow these instructions:

  • Log-in to SAMS and select “Long-term Care Facility Component” and your facility/group name.
  • Click “Submit” to review the “Agreement to Participate and Consent.”
  • Click “Accept” next to the appropriate contact name.
  • Click “Submit.”  A pop-up notification then will appear confirming this action; click “Ok” to acknowledge the notification.

If you log-in to SAMS and see the “Annual Survey” alert on your facility homepage, please follow these instructions to remove the alert:

  • Click “Survey Required 2020” alert on the facility homepage to be directed to the online survey.
  • Complete the “Facility Characteristics” section and scroll to the bottom to click “Save” to submit your survey.

Finally, please note that according to the CDC, “to maintain consistency in reporting, if a facility is using crisis level strategies,” the facility is experiencing a shortage.  In other words, PPE strategies that do not commensurate with U.S. standards of care are considered a shortage.