News & Insights


May 17, 2021

Health Headlines – May 17, 2021

CMS Issues New Rule Imposing Education About, and Access to, COVID-19 Vaccines and Reporting Requirements for Nursing Home and Congregate Care Facilities – On May 11, 2021, CMS issued an interim final rule requiring that nursing homes and other congregate care facilities: (1) educate all residents and staff about COVID-19 vaccines; (2) offer COVID-19 vaccines to all residents and staff when available; and (3) report the COVID-19 vaccination status of residents and staff to the CDC on a weekly basis (the Interim Final Rule). These requirements apply to all nursing home and group care facilities receiving Medicare or Medicaid funds.  Comments on the Interim Final Rule are due no later than 5 p.m. on July 12, 2021.

This Interim Final Rule follows on the heels of information released by the CDC which shows that approximately 16% of Medicare or Medicaid-certified facilities (about 2,500) did not participate in the Pharmacy Partnership Program wherein COVID-19 vaccines were delivered onsite to any nursing home facility wishing to participate. Similarly, CDC data shows that less than 20% of nursing homes have voluntarily submitted data regarding COVID-19 vaccination numbers at their facilities. According to CDC statistics, nursing home residents make-up less than 1% of the American population, but have historically accounted for over one-third of all COVID-19 deaths. For these reasons, and others, CMS identified the need to ensure education about COVID-19, and access to vaccines for this vulnerable population, as critical.

A copy of the Interim Final Rule can be found here. Comments can be submitted electronically at

Reporter, Amy L. O’Neill, Sacramento, +1 916 321 4812,

King & Spalding Client Alert: Ransomware on the Rise in Critical Infrastructure Sector – Recent ransomware attacks against U.S. critical infrastructure, which includes the energy sector’s production of oil and natural gas, and other sources of electricity and power, have shed a spotlight on the importance of staying updated on sector-specific techniques, tactics and procedures (TTPs), and preventative and remediation actions. In a new Client Alert available here, King & Spalding: (1) provides a brief background on the nature and risks of ransomware on critical infrastructure; (2) discusses the current ransomware threat landscape; (3) notes legal considerations companies should take into account when determining how to respond to ransomware attacks; (4) discusses recent calls for cybersecurity oversight; (5) provides an overview of recent public ransomware incidents; and (6) sets forth potential steps companies can take to mitigate the risks of ransomware.

Also In The News:

King & Spalding Webinar - Practical Steps to Prepare Your Hospital’s Controlled Substances Diversion Program for Government Scrutiny
King & Spalding will host a webinar on May 20, 2021 from 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. ET.  This Life Sciences & Healthcare Roundtable will discuss practical ways to proactively evaluate and improve your organization’s controlled substance diversion prevention program. The webinar will focus on, among other topics, why hospitals are at risk of controlled substance diversion, what can trigger DEA scrutiny, key elements of a controlled substance diversion prevention program in a hospital setting, and questions to ask now to prepare your controlled substance diversion prevention program for government scrutiny. You can obtain additional information here, and can register for the webinar here.