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CMS Finalizes Rule to Bolster Emergency Preparedness – Part One

By Lee Tincher, MS, RDN

President, Meals for All, Inc.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has finally released the long-expected final Rule for health care emergency preparedness. CMS wants to ensure that all healthcare providers and facilities have an emergency preparedness plan in place at all times. This new Rule has been in development from shortly after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Recent disasters from hurricanes in New York, New Jersey and Florida to flooding in North Carolina and Louisiana to wildfires in the west have forced the evacuation of many hospitals and health care facilities. These disasters put the health and safety of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries — and the public at large — at risk. “Situations like the recent flooding remind us in the event of an emergency, the first priority of health care providers and suppliers is to protect the health and safety of their patients,” said CMS Deputy Director and Chief Medical Officer Patrick Conway, MD. “Preparation, planning and one comprehensive approach for emergency preparedness is key. One life lost is one too many.” 

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NEW Emergency Meal Plan Solution Custom Created for Vegetarians

Meals for All Develops Vegetarian Emergency Preparedness Meals & Plan

13475233_1106377156087366_9084530990914023011_oMeals for All released their newest line of emergency preparedness meals and plan for vegetarians this month. Meals for All, launched in 2012, ­­­­was developed by an RDN team as an innovative solution for emergency preparedness. The New Vegetarian product line meets nutritional needs for all typical therapeutic diets, including texture-modified—and even puree diets.

“We are thrilled to welcome the addition of a vegetarian choice into our emergency preparedness line of products,” said Lee Tincher, President, Meals for All, Inc. “The complete nutritional vegetarian requirements have been met and there are several tasty vegetarian choices we are very excited about.” she added. “Through this addition, we are looking forward to supplying our growing US customer base with another high-quality, emergency preparedness menu choice.”

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Who will you be feeding in the next disaster?

How many people does your 2016 Emergency Preparedness Plan cover?

Disaster Meal Planning

Hurricane Katrina put the spotlight on healthcare systems and the need to better protect the elderly and disabled members of a community. In crisis situations, we are all dependent on each other. People in food service are in a pivotal position to make a special contribution to the welfare of great numbers of people who find themselves in need during a crisis.

Emergency management is necessary in healthcare communities and encompasses all disciplines. Nothing is more important to emergency planning and response than the need for food, safe water and management. So, how do you prepare and how do you calculate your emergency food needs for a real disaster? There are all types of disasters. It is important to have a plan to address individual disaster needs. Disasters come in all sizes and shapes including fire or smoke, severe weather, loss of power, earthquake, explosion, bomb threats, armed individuals, gas leak, loss of heat, missing resident and loss of normal water supply.

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