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CAP Accreditation Update: COVID-19

The College of American Pathologists (CAP) understands the pressures you face with COVID-19. As the situation is fluid, we’d like to share some of the most recent changes that may impact you as a CAP-accredited laboratory:

CAP Secures Remote Work Waiver for Pathologists (during the COVID-19 public health emergency)

An organized advocacy campaign led by the CAP persuaded the federal government to allow pathologists to work remotely. Read more. Under the CLIA regulations, a CLIA license is needed wherever a pathologist is physically sitting when making a primary diagnostic interpretation, whether using telepathology or reading a physical slide. Due to the public health emergency posed by COVID-19 and the urgent need to expand laboratory capacity, the CMS agreed to exercise its enforcement discretion to adopt a temporary policy that will allow pathologists to work remotely under certain conditions.

What this means:

  • Under the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) enforcement discretion, CMS will now allow pathologists to remotely review and report laboratory data/slides/images.
  • With this temporary change, CMS will not require a separate certificate for laboratories that are in a temporary testing site (a location used to perform laboratory testing such as a pathologist’s home) provided that:
    • The designated primary site or home base has a current certificate (of registration, compliance or accreditation).
    • The scope of work performed falls within the primary site’s certificate.
  • The temporary site must comply with other applicable federal and state laws including HIPAA.
  • This guidance does not apply to pathologists who have already obtained CLIA certificates for their home or other locations separate from the primary testing site.

Latest on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Get accreditation updates on the CAP’s COVID-19 page, including:

CAP Responds to Your COVID-19 Questions

As we learn new things daily, and respond to your questions, we are compiling the questions and answers for you. Have a question? Please contact us at accred@cap.org.

We appreciate your dedication and efforts in these difficult days. Thank you for being a CAP-accredited laboratory.