Transition to iQIES Will Require Security Official

Regulation | August 05, 2022 | by Jodi Eyigor

CMS discussed the system transition to iQIES, including the appointment of Security Officials, during the SNF Open Door Forum on August 4.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will soon begin transitioning nursing homes to the Internet Quality Improvement and Evaluation System (iQIES). First piloted in May 2021 for Home Health Agencies, CMS is working to transition all state agencies and CMS locations to the new internet-based system that will consolidate and replace functionality from the Quality Improvement and Evaluation System (QIES), Certification and Survey Provider Enhanced Reports (CASPER), and Automated Survey Process Environment (ASPEN) legacy systems.

This transition will include the Minimum Data Set (MDS), utilized by nursing homes as the Resident Assessment Instrument (RAI) and as announced during the August 4 Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Open Door Forum, will require identification of an individual to act as Security Official. The Security Official, identified by each provider and approved by CMS, will have the responsibility of approving all iQIES users for the individual provider organization, including any vendors that may be accessing iQIES on behalf of the provider.

CMS will reach out to provider organizations to initiate this process through a waved approach beginning on August 15 and proceeding through the end of October. Providers will be contacted according to CMS Region as listed below.

Date

CMS Region

August 15

Regions 1 and 2

August 29

Regions 3, 9, and 10

September 12

Region 4

September 26

Region 6

October 17

Region 5

October 31

Regions 7 and 8

Check out this map for help identifying your CMS region.

CMS expects to complete initial contacts for Security Officials by the end of October and begin general on-boarding communication by mid-November. CMS has provided very little additional information for how this transition and the Security Official identification will take place, causing concern among providers. Questions include:

  • How will providers be contacted by CMS to identify the Security Official?
  • What information will the Security Official be required to provide in order to assume this role?
  • For multi-site organizations, can one Security Official fulfill the role for each site or must each site have a unique Security Official?
  • How much time will the Security Official need to devote to approving users?
  • What will be the process for replacing Security Officials in the event of turnover?

CMS plans to release Frequently Asked Questions, training, and resources soon. These resources will be found on the QIES Technical Support Office webpage.