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 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 complete the Civil Rights Information Request for Medicare Certification Package. To guide you through completing the Package, we have created this Portal that will help you develop/submit polices that meet your civil right requirements.
Please note, if you complete the Package via the Portal, you do not have to submit any hard copies. Your State Agency will be informed that you have completed this Package and submitted it to OCR. No further action will be needed by you.
If you prefer to submit your Package via hard copy, you must (a) complete the "Civil Rights Information Request for Medicare Certification Form" (PDF-189KB); and (b) develop and submit your civil rights policies and procedures that are listed in the Form. Send these to your local State Agency, along with your other Medicare Part A application materials.
Click here for technical assistance and to obtain civil rights sample policies and procedures.