US COPD Coalition



September 12, 2019 – The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the following statement regarding Hurricane Dorian:

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) today announced efforts underway to support North Carolina in response to Hurricane Dorian. On September 4, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar declared a public health emergency (PHE) in North Carolina that is retroactive to September 1. CMS is working to ensure hospitals and other facilities can continue operations and provide access to care despite the effects of Hurricane Dorian. CMS will be waiving certain Medicare, Medicaid, and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) requirements; creating special enrollment opportunities for individuals to access healthcare quickly; and taking steps to ensure dialysis patients obtain critical life-saving services.

“We are extremely concerned about those who are in harm’s way and affected by Hurricane Dorian and CMS is doing everything within its authority to provide assistance and relief to everyone impacted by the devastation of this storm,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “It is our priority to make sure we coordinate with our federal, state, and local partners to make sure our beneficiaries have the access to healthcare and other critical life-saving and sustaining services they may need.”

One of the many areas in which CMS will grant waivers during this emergency is in medical equipment and supplies replacement:

CMS will be temporarily suspending certain requirements necessary for Medicare beneficiaries who have lost or realized damage to their durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies as a result of the hurricane. This will help to make sure that beneficiaries can continue to access the needed medical equipment and supplies they rely on each day. Medicare beneficiaries can contact 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) for assistance.

Click on this link to see the full CMS press release regarding Hurricane Dorian support: CMS offers comprehensive support for North Carolina with Hurricane Dorian preparation.