Many of you have been asking about the NONDISCRIMINATION PROVISION of the Affordable Care Act and what does it mean for you as a provider.
Well again….We keep it easy to understand, simple to implement, completely effective and you can take care of patients and not worry about it. No drama or instilling fear as others would make you think.
Section 1557 is the nondiscrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The law prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability in certain health programs or activities. Section 1557 builds on long-standing and familiar Federal civil rights laws: Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975.
Section 1557 has been in effect since its enactment in 2010 and the HHS Office for Civil Rights has been enforcing the provision since it was enacted.
Issuance of the Final Rule
On May 13, 2016, the HHS Office for Civil Rights issued the final rule implementing of Section 1557, which gives you 60 days to have in place in your office.
How are you as a provider supposed to let your patients know about their rights?
The final rule requires all covered entities to post a notice of consumer civil rights; covered entities with 15 or more employees are also required to have a civil rights grievance procedure and an employee designated to coordinate compliance. Under a new requirement, covered entities are required to post information telling consumers about their rights and telling consumers with disabilities and consumers with limited English proficiency (LEP) about the right to receive communication assistance.
What to do first?
ICCOM has a “draft” copy you can get absolutely free and in several languages. Most of you do not have 15 or more employees. If you do, you will have to have written grievance policies and procedures and a designated official to handle the grievances.