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Hospital Event Notifications – A New CMS Condition of Participation

What You Need to Know

  • The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published the CMS Interoperability and Patient Access final rule in May 2020, adding a new requirement to the Conditions of Participation (CoP) for hospitals.
  • The rule requires hospitals to begin sending Event Notifications (sometimes known as Alerts) to a patient’s established primary care providers (PCPs) and post-acute care (PAC) providers and suppliers when a patient is admitted, discharged, or transferred from an inpatient stay or from the emergency department (ED).
  • The purpose of the rule is to:
    • provide real-time information to identified providers about patients as they are admitted, transferred, and discharged from a hospital, allowing preparations to be made for follow up care and
    • improve transitions of care for patients after a hospital visit.
  • The Event Notification requirement became effective May 1, 2021.

Learn the Details

Notifications Sent for

  • Inpatient Admission
  • ED Registration
  • Observations
  • Inpatient Discharge or Transfer
  • ED Discharge or Transfer


  • At the time of Admission or Registration
  • Immediately prior to or at the time of Discharge or Transfer

Data Included in the Event Notification

  • Patient Name
  • Sending Institution (hospital)
  • Treating Practitioner (attending physician)
  • Event Type and Date

Notification Recipients

  • The patient’s established PCP practitioner or group,
  • Established PAC providers and suppliers, and
  • Other practitioners and groups identified by the patient as primarily responsible for his or her care


Frequently Asked Questions

Are all hospitals required to send Event Notifications? Medicare- and Medicaid-participating acute care, critical access, and psychiatric hospitals are required to send event notifications if their electronic health record (EHR) system conforms to the HL7 2.5.1 content exchange standard.

Which hospitals does etHIN send Event Notifications for?

  • Covenant Health
    • Claiborne Medical Center
    • Cumberland Medical Center
    • Ft. Loudoun Medical Center
    • Ft. Sanders Regional Medical Center
    • LeConte Medical Center
    • Morristown Hamblen Medical Center
    • Methodist Medical Center of Oak Ridge
    • Parkwest Medical Center
    • Roane Medical Center
  • East Tennessee Children’s Hospital
  • University of Tennessee Medical Center

How can my hospital have etHIN send its Event Notifications? The first requirement is to have an ADT interface in place with etHIN. Please contact us at Info@ethin.org or call 865-691-8433, ext. 2 for more information.

Will physician practices and post-acute care providers automatically begin receiving Notifications from etHIN on May 1, 2021? Yes, if you have a correct email address (electronic endpoint) in the NPPES Directory. Go to https://nppes.cms.hhs.gov/#/ to log into your NPPES account and verify or enter your Direct secure email address as CMS requests in the new rule. You can also submit your electronic contact information to etHIN for our Provider Directory. Please contact us at Info@ethin.org if you wish to provide your electronic contact information to us.

What is the cost to receive the Notifications? There are no-cost secure email delivery options available to physician practices and post-acute care providers and suppliers. There is also an option to have the information pushed directly into your EMR system, which has an associated cost.

Are physician practices and post-acute care providers and suppliers required to participate in Event Notifications? No. If you decide that the notifications are unnecessary or are not useful in coordinating care for your patients, CMS allows you to opt-out.

How do I opt-out? Contact us at Info@ethin.org, and we will send an opt-out form to you.

If I opt-out, can I change my mind and start receiving the Notifications later? Yes. Contact us at Info@ethin.org, and we will send an opt-in form to you.

Additional Questions? Contact us at Info@ethin.org or call 865-691-8433, extension 2.