The Supreme Court of the United States upheld the COVID vaccination mandate for healthcare workers working at facilities that are regulated under the Centers for Medicare/Medicare health and safety standards.  Not all facilities, providers or suppliers receiving Medicare or Medicaid funds fall under the mandate, so it is important to review the CMS updated external FAQ. The Supreme Court, by a 5 to 4 vote, held the Secretary of Health and Human Services, who administers both Medicare and Medicaid, acted within its authority by issuing a vaccine mandate for healthcare workers working at select facilities receiving Medicare and Medicaid funding.

Compliance deadlines

The Supreme Court’s ruling underscores the need for covered healthcare facilities to be aware of their obligations under the CMS rule, as well as upcoming compliance deadlines.  The rule will be implemented and enforced on the following timeline:  Phase 1 (dose one or establish medical or religious exemption) by January 27, 2022 and Phase 2 deadline of February 28, 2022 (for dose 2).  Since this guidance takes the form of an emergency regulation, it is subject to review and revision based upon public comment.    Read our Legal Alert on the vaccine mandate for more detail; and please contact us with any questions.