Berkadia Closes $40M in Skilled Nursing Deals; Ensign Expands Again in Texas

Skilled nursing heavyweight The Ensign Group (Nasdaq: ENSG) last week took over operations of the Hays Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, a 116-bed property in San Marcos, Texas. The deal expands the San Juan Capistrano, Calif.-based Ensign’s total portfolio to 228 properties across 13 states. “We are excited to strengthen our presence in the state of […]

NIC: Stalled Skilled Nursing Occupancy of 74% ‘Threatens Long-Term Survival’ of Facilities

Occupancy at the nation’s skilled nursing facilities remains stalled well below pre-pandemic levels, prompting a major data provider in the space to sound alarm bells about the financial state of the space heading into a potentially devastating winter. The nation’s SNFs were 74% full during the third quarter of 2020, the National Investment Center for […]

CMS Finalizes Proposed Cuts to Medicare Part B Therapy Services for 2021, Expands Telehealth Coverage

The federal government on Tuesday finalized its proposed physician fee schedule for the 2021 calendar year, formalizing cuts to Medicare reimbursement rates for therapy services provided to residents covered under Part B — while also expanding some telehealth flexibilities offered during COVID-19. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) in August floated a 9% […]

Long-Term Care COVID Deaths Top 100K as Post-Holiday Coronavirus Surge Looms

The nation’s long-term care facilities passed another grim COVID-19 milestone ahead of Thanksgiving, with experts and leaders warning that holiday gatherings over this past weekend could only set off more outbreaks in the weeks to come. The nursing home death toll passed 100,000 residents and workers as of November 24, according to a data analysis […]

Former CMS Chief: Feds Must Reimagine Nursing Home Enforcement with Sharper Sticks — and Smarter Carrots

The discussion of how to improve nursing homes, especially in the wake of the still-unfolding COVID-19 tragedy, tends to divide observers into two broad camps: the industry partisans who call for more collaboration from the federal government and better funding, and the sharp critics who insist regulation should primarily — if not exclusively — take […]

CMS to Retire Old Nursing Home Compare Site on December 1

The end is near for the older version of the federal government’s primary consumer-focused nursing home resource. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will formally phase out its eight original Compare tools — including Nursing Home Compare — on December 1 in favor of its new unified Care Compare site. CMS unveiled the […]

OIG to Probe Improper Nursing Home Discharges, Evictions

The federal government’s top health care watchdog last week announced a plan to investigate whether nursing homes are following rules around discharges, specifically citing media reports about improper evictions from facilities. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) added a probe of facility-initiated discharges to its formal work […]

COVID Outbreaks in Nursing Homes Accelerate Premature Deaths from Other Causes

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a significant increase in nursing home deaths caused by other factors, a new analysis performed on behalf of the Associated Press has determined. Every two coronavirus deaths in nursing homes were associated with an additional premature death for another reason, University of California, San Francisco professor Stephen Kaye determined […]

CMS Issues Holiday Guidance for Nursing Homes: No Visitation Changes, Leaving Facilities Discouraged

The federal government on Wednesday issued an alert to nursing home operators and residents, urging extreme caution during the impending holiday season — and compelling providers to warn families about the risks of taking residents out of facilities for off-site gatherings. Notably, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will not change its rules […]

Sabra: Genesis, Signature Not Alone in COVID-19 Troubles, But Wider Write-Down Trend Unlikely

General improvements in access to testing and vital protective gear have put skilled nursing facilities in a better spot than the springtime, a top landlord in the space asserted Tuesday, but operators and investors shouldn’t necessarily expect complete adoption of a long-awaited vaccine when it hits the market. And although Sabra Health Care REIT (Nasdaq: […]

Parkinson: ‘Worst Fears Have Come True’ as Nursing Home COVID Cases Hit New Record, Operators ‘Powerless’ to Stop Trend Alone

The number of positive COVID-19 cases in nursing homes reached a new weekly record at the start of this month as the novel coronavirus continues to expand unchecked in various parts of the country, according to a new analysis from a leading industry trade group. Nursing homes logged 10,279 confirmed cases among residents during the […]

$317M Eagle Arc Portfolio Buy Marks First Deal for Capital Funding’s Credit Arm

A sweeping portfolio deal on behalf of Eagle Arc Partners marked the first transaction for Capital Funding Group’s new credit venture — with a $317.5 million price tag. The Baltimore-based lending and finance firm closed the bridge-to-Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) acquisition loan through its CFG Credit Partners entity. The $300 million-plus deal […]

Curve Health Sees Value-Based Progress at Nursing Homes — Even If It’s Still Technically Fee-for-Service

The federal government has talked a big game about shifting toward value-based payments for Medicare and Medicaid providers, but fee-for-service reimbursements have remained a primary force governing operations in the post-acute and long-term care sector. COVID-19 has subtly shifted that dynamic, however — especially in the field of telemedicine, which has seen skyrocketing adoption rates […]

ESI Handles 21-Building Exit for Skilled Nursing Operator with $86M Price Tag

Evans Senior Investments this week announced the successful completion of an $86 million deal that saw a Midwestern nursing home owner-operator offload 21 facilities across three distinct portfolios. The unnamed seller was looking for an exit from the long-term care space, according to a release from the Chicago-based ESI, which marketed the buildings in three […]

Invesque to Cut Symphony Exposure in Half, Reports No Bridgemoor Revenue as Post-Acute COVID Strains Mount

Invesque Inc. (TSE: IVQ.U) this week reported significant COVID-19 strains on a pair of its post-acute care tenants, with the skilled nursing landlord taking steps to reduce its exposure to Symphony Care Network and reporting no revenue from Bridgemoor Transitional Care. The real estate investment firm will either sell or transition operations at half of […]

Provider-Led I-SNPs Grow 28% in 2021, Outpacing Traditional Medicare Advantage Insurers

Providers of nursing home care and other long-term services continued to expand their Medicare Advantage offerings into the 2021 plan year, as more operators look to gain financial control in a landscape where managed care maintains its steady march toward a Medicare majority. The number of provider-led Institutional Special Needs Plans (I-SNPs) increased from 76 […]

New BaneCare President: ‘It’s Up to Us’ in Nursing Home Sector to Plot Future of Long-Term Care

Successfully taking the reins of a nursing home chain during the COVID-19 pandemic may seem like an insurmountable challenge, but Kevin Morris sees only opportunity ahead — both for his company, BaneCare Management, and the industry as a whole. It’s just up to the leaders within the industry to chart a better and safer path […]

CMS, Medicare to Cover COVID-19 Antibody Drug in Nursing Homes

The federal government this week announced that Medicare will cover a recently approved antibody treatment for COVID-19 in a range of settings, including nursing homes. The Food and Drug Administration on Monday cleared on an emergency basis the use of bamlanivimab — a monoclonial antibody infusion — for adults with mild to moderate cases of COVID-19. […]

HHS to Ramp Up Point-of-Care COVID Test Distribution in Hotspots, Launch New Cue Health Nursing Home Pilot

The federal government will increase shipments of point-of-care testing supplies to nursing homes in counties with high levels of COVID-19 community spread, while also launching a separate pilot program with yet another testing device in select states. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will now send enough rapid test kits to support twice-weekly […]