Final rules effective August 1, 2017, establish new requirements for medical directors of adult cardiac catheterization and adult open heart surgery services. Although the changes are subtle, they may impact your medical director.

For adult cardiac catheterization services:

Effective August 1, 2017, the medical director of a level II or level III cardiac catheterization service must be board certified in interventional cardiology and

  • have at least five years’ experience in interventional cardiology; or
  • have performed, as the primary operator, at least 500 PCIs.

The rule in effect before August 1, 2017, required the medical director to only meet one of these three criteria. Effective August 1, 2017, the medical director of a level II or level III service must be board certified in interventional cardiology – this criterion can no longer be met by experience alone.

For adult open heart surgery services:

Effective August 1, 2017, the medical director of an adult open heart surgery service must be board certified in thoracic surgery. The rule in effect before August 1, 2017, only specified that the medical director be board certified in an appropriate specialty.

Waiver to requirement:

If your medical director does not meet the new requirement, you may request a waiver from the Ohio Department of Health (ODH). The waiver must be in writing, filed before August 1, 2017, and

  • describe the undue hardship to the service if the waiver is not granted;
  • address patient health and safety by describing the experience and expertise of the medical director and historical quality of the service; and
  • specify the time period in which the waiver should be in effect (g., under the current medical director or specified time frame if under temporary directorship).

The Author

Christine Kenney
Director of Regulatory Services
614.227.4865
ckenney@incomplianceconsulting.com