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CMS delays ambulance data collection until 2022

Ambulance services initially selected to collect and report data for 2020 and 2021 will now begin collecting data on Jan. 1, 2022

By Laura French

BALTIMORE — The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have announced that agencies selected to participate in year 1 and year 2 of the Medicare Ground Ambulance Data Collection System will both have their data collection periods delayed until 2022.

CMS initially issued a blanket waiver in May to delay data collection for year 1 participants by one year, according to the American Ambulance Association (AAA). On Tuesday, CMS revised the waiver to push the collection periods for both year 1 and year 2 participants to 2022.

Agencies originally selected to collect data between Jan. 1, 2020 and Dec. 31, 2020, as well as agencies selected to collect data between Jan. 1, 2021 and Dec. 31, 2021, will now be required to collect data between Jan. 1, 2022 and Dec. 31, 2022.

The blanket waiver was put in place due to concerns that the COVID-19 pandemic, combined with the winter influenza season, would strain the capacity of ground ambulance services in 2021, according to the AAA.

See page 31 of the revised CMS blanket waivers for healthcare providers for full details on this change.