Complying with OCR Section 1557: Discrimination, Interpreters, Required Signs, and More

Recorded Webinar | Laura A. Dixon | From: Jun 26, 2024 - To: Dec 31, 2024

This webinar will discuss a law that applies to all hospitals, including critical access hospitals, and other healthcare providers such as physician offices and nursing homes. The law addresses nondiscrimination, required signs and notices, interpreters, a civil rights law for healthcare providers and others, and more under Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act. It forbids discrimination based on sex, race, color, national origin, age, and disability. It builds on long-standing and familiar Federal civil rights laws. This is the first law to prohibit discrimination based on sex (which includes gender and gender identity) in covered health programs and activities.

This program will discuss case law regarding several issues important to hospitals and changes by the OCR to comply with these including not requiring hospitals to perform an abortion if against their religious beliefs and issues related to gender.

Also to be addressed will be CMS’s recognition that there were no prohibitions in the hospital Conditions of Participation on gender identities which can be a barrier to seeking care. While CMS decided not to include the law in two separate places within the CoPs, they can refer any issue to the OCR.

Hospitals are required to have a policy on nondiscrimination and must educate their staff. Patients must be notified in a language they can understand and how to file a complaint if they encounter discrimination. Interpreters must be qualified, which will be explained.

This program will provide resources and information to help meet the education requirements to ensure your employees know and follow this law. Resources will provide such as a list of each state’s 15 taglines and OCR has these in 64 languages. Sample notice will be posted and a sample grievance procedure will also be provided.

Learning Objectives:-

  • Discuss that hospitals are required to post a sign regarding nondiscrimination.
  • Describe that the hospital must have a sign with 15 taglines (17 in 4 states and DC), notifying patients of the right to an interpreter at no cost.
  • Recall that the Office of Civil Rights is the main enforcer of Section 1557.
  • Discuss that the hospital must have a process for patients to want to file a grievance related to discrimination.


  • Introduction to OCR
  • Section 1557 of the ACA
  • The Rule and Covered Entities
  • Court cases and OCR/CMS updates
  • Interpreters
  • Discrimination prevention
  • Discrimination and protected classes
  • 2 required signs
  • Interpreters
  • Revision of complaint policy
  • Disability discrimination
  • Grievance policy and procedures
  • Need for a Grievance Coordinator
  • Requirements for filing a grievance
  • OCR training
  • OCR investigations and cases against hospitals
  • CMS and OCR

Resources and Internet Links

Who Should Attend?

  • Risk Manager
  • Patient Advocates
  • Compliance Officer
  • Chief Medical Officer
  • CEO
  • COO
  • CNO
  • Nurse Managers/Supervisors
  • ED Managers
  • Physicians and Advance Practice Providers
  • Policy Committee
  • Nurses
  • Director of Registration
  • Human Resources
  • Person in charge of Interpreting Services
  • Director of Education

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Recording & Transcript (Pdf)   +   $389
DVD & Transcript (Pdf)   +   $399

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Find more webinars by expert Laura A. Dixon.