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EDMUND G. BROWN JR.
Governor

State of California—Health and Human Services Agency
California Department of Public Health


AFL 22-05
January 26, 2022


TO:
Hospices

SUBJECT:
Senate Bill (SB) 353 – Extension of Palliative Care Pilot Program (PCPP)


All Facilities Letter (AFL) Summary

This AFL notifies hospices of the chaptering of SB 353 (Chapter 488, Statutes of 2021) extending the PCPP until January 1, 2027 and updating the PCPP reporting deadlines.

Effective January 1, 2022, SB 353 extends the PCPP established under the California Hospice Licensure Act of 1990 by SB 294 (Chapter 515, Statutes of 2017), until January 1, 2027. The PCPP allows a licensed hospice to provide any interdisciplinary hospice services, including but not limited to palliative care, to a patient with a serious illness as determined by the physician and surgeon in charge of the care of the patient. A serious illness is a condition that may result in death, regardless of the estimated length of the patient's remaining period of life. A seriously ill patient receiving palliative care from a participating hospice provider may continue to receive curative treatment from other licensed health care professionals. 

A licensee must notify the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) of its intent to participate in the PCPP. Licensees participating in the PCPP must report annually to CDPH by April 30 specified information for the time period in the prior calendar year that the licensee was permitted to provide palliative care under the PCPP. The licensee must submit the report if the hospice participated at any time in the prior calendar year, regardless of whether the hospice provided palliative care to seriously ill patients, or if the licensee ceased participation in the PCPP. Annual reporting is required through April 30, 2025. The PCPP reporting link is available through CDPH's website on the Annual Palliative Care Pilot Program Report page.

Additionally, a hospice must inform CDPH of its intent to cease participation in the PCPP prior to January 1, 2027.

CDPH will convene a stakeholder meeting to discuss the results of the collected information prior to January 15, 2026.

For questions regarding notification of participation in the PCPP, please contact the Centralized Applications Branch (CAB) by email at CAB@cdph.ca.gov or by phone at (916) 552-8632. For questions about completing the annual report through the online portal, please contact the Informatics Branch by email at CDPHCHCQInformatics@cdph.ca.gov.

CDPH's failure to expressly notify facilities of statutory or regulatory requirements does not relieve facilities of their responsibility for following all laws and regulations. Facilities should refer to the full text of all applicable sections of Health and Safety Code and the California Code of Regulations to ensure compliance.

 

Sincerely,

Original signed by Cassie Dunham

Cassie Dunham

Acting Deputy Director

 

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