Civil Rights Clearance for Medicare Provider Applicants
If you are a health care provider seeking initial Medicare Part A certification and or undergoing a change of ownership (CHOW), you need a civil rights clearance. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will not certify you as a Medicare provider if you do not receive a clearance from the Office for Civil Rights (OCR).
CMS has legal authority under Title XVIII of the Social Security Act to require health care providers to meet the legal requirements of the civil rights nondiscrimination statutes and regulations enforced by OCR in order to participate in the Medicare Part A program. These statues and regulations ensure that eligible persons have equal access to quality health care regardless of their race, color, national origin, disability, or age. The specific statutes include: Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color and national origin); Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability); and The Age discrimination of 1975 ( which prohibits discrimination on the basis of age).
To receive a civil rights clearance, you must (a) complete the "Civil Rights Information Request for Medicare Certification Form (PDF)," and (b) develop and submit your civil rights polices and procedures that are listed in the Form. Send these to your local State Agency, along with your other Medicare Part A application materials. Technical assistance and sample polices are provided to assist you in developing your policies.