Accreditation

CMS offers categorical waiver allowing power strip use in hospitals

Accreditation Insider, September 30, 2014

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Effective immediately, the CMS is offering a categorical waiver allowing hospitals to use power strips (also known as multi-plug adapters or relocatable power taps) in patient care areas under certain circumstances, according to an issue brief released by the American Society for Healthcare Engineering (ASHE).

The 1999 edition of NFPA 99, which is referenced in the 2000 edition of the Life Safety Code®, did not permit the use of power strips. A new CMS memo says those requirements have become “outmoded and unduly burdensome.” The 2012 edition of NFPA 99 expands the permitted use of power strips in patient care rooms.

A hospital that wants to use the waiver must have written documentation and notify surveyors upon arrival at the facility that the hospital is using the waiver and meets the requirements. Power strips may not be used in a patient care area to power non-patient care-related equipment such as electronics; they may be used outside patient care areas for both patient care-related and non-patient care-related equipment.

Read the ASHE briefing.
 



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