Have You Posted Your Section 1557 Notice Yet?

By Lyndsey Barnett

If not, you are likely not alone but need to get it posted because the deadline for posting was October 16th.   In an earlier blog post, we discussed what entities may be “covered entities” and subject to the new Section 1557 nondiscrimination rules of the ACA.   If you have determined that you are a covered entity subject to Section 1557, one of the requirements is that you must notify beneficiaries, enrollees, applicants, and members of the public that you don’t discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability in its health programs and activities.  The notice must also explain the aids and services available to individuals with disabilities and those that have limited English proficiency.  The notice must explain how these services can be obtained, a contact person to file grievances with and how to file a grievance with the Department of Health and Human Services.  The notice also needs to contain taglines on how to obtain services in the top 15 languages spoken in the states in which the covered entity does business.

The notice must be included in any “significant publications and significant communications” targeted to beneficiaries, enrollees, and applicant.  It must also be posted in conspicuous physical locations where the covered entity interacts with the public and on a conspicuous location on the entity’s web site accessible from the home page.  For smaller publications such as postcards and tri-folds, an annotated version of the notice (referred to as a statement) may be included and the tagline only needs to be posted in the top 2 languages in the state.

HHS has provided a model notice, a sample statement, and the taglines in all of the potential languages.   These resources can be found at this link. HHS has also published a list of the top 15 languages spoken in each state, which can be found here.