Mass. Official Calls for Improvements in Nursing Home Abuse, Neglect Investigations

A top official in Massachusetts called on the state’s health department to improve its nursing home investigation efforts after an audit revealed significant delays in processing inspections of potentially deficient properties. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health’s investigative unit failed to conduct on-site inspections of nursing homes within the mandated 10-day timeframe in 148 of […]

Two Arkansas Skilled Nursing Facilities Sue Federal Government Over Arbitration Rule

Two nursing facilities in Arkansas filed a lawsuit last week against the U.S. federal government over the final rule regarding arbitration in skilled nursing facilities, arguing that the newest iteration of the regulation “is just as unlawful” as the 2016 rule that banned the practice altogether. The two plaintiffs are Northport Health Services of Arkansas […]

CMS Expands Power to Ban Providers with ‘Problematic’ Affiliations from Medicare, Medicaid

The federal government on Thursday finalized a rule that will expand its power to remove potentially unscrupulous health care providers from Medicare and Medicaid eligibility. Under the new final rule, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) can kick providers out of the programs if they have a previous affiliation with a banned organization, […]

CMS Chief Medical Officer: More Changes Coming to Nursing Home Compare, Quality Measures

The past several years have seen sweeping overhauls of nursing home enforcement on the federal level, and the Medicare program’s top clinical officer says her agency isn’t done beefing up its efforts. Dr. Kate Goodrich, the chief medical officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), promised that more changes are coming to […]

AHCA: CMS Already Has Authority to Simplify Three-Day Stay Rule for Nursing Home Coverage

The leading national trade group representing for-profit skilled nursing facilities this week called on the federal government to streamline its policy on Medicare eligibility for nursing home care, arguing that officials already have the legal authority to do so. American Health Care Association president and CEO Mark Parkinson formally asked Centers for Medicare & Medicaid […]

Verma: CMS Should Reduce Survey Frequency for Top Nursing Homes, Look Beyond Monetary Penalties

The leader of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Wednesday continued her public push for greater nursing home oversight, promising that the agency will use data to target states with suspiciously low rates of citations — while also expressing a desire to reduce survey frequencies for top performers. CMS administrator Seema Verma […]

OIG Calls on New York to Crack Down on Nursing Home Safety

The federal government’s top health care watchdog has called on state officials in New York to beef up enforcement of nursing home safety rules after uncovering multiple violations in a recent audit. The Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) this month released a report accusing the Empire State […]

Judge Approves $1M Penalty in Record-Setting HUD Skilled Nursing Default

An administrative law judge approved a nearly $1 million penalty against the owner of an Illinois nursing home chain responsible for the worst default in the history of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s loan program for health care facilities, the New York Times reported on Friday. Under the terms of the deal, Zvi […]

Resident Advocate: Nursing Home Fines Must Increase to Improve Care, Prevent Harm

Between a new Medicare payment model and increased scrutiny on nursing home safety from the federal government, 2019 may go down as a watershed year for skilled nursing regulations. But at least one patient advocate says the government — particularly under the Trump administration — hasn’t gone far enough. Toby Edelman, a senior policy attorney […]

Lawsuit Over Three-Day Stay Rule for Medicare SNF Coverage Begins as Verma Promises: ‘We’re Listening’

A class-action lawsuit challenging the Medicare eligibility rules for skilled nursing coverage will finally get its day in court this week — shortly after the administrator in charge of the program publicly questioned the status quo. The trial over the lawsuit, first filed in 2011, began Monday in a Hartford federal courtroom, according to an […]

Diversicare Reaches Tentative $9.5M Agreement to Settle DOJ Investigation

Diversicare Healthcare Services (Nasdaq: DVCR) on Monday announced that it has reached a tentative agreement to settle an investigation into its therapy practices and other issues that had long served as a drag on its operations. “For six years, we’ve had this open investigation, but we’re now closer to having certainty on the matter,” CEO […]

CMS Finalizes $851M Pay Bump for Nursing Homes, Rolls Out PDPM Clarifications

The federal government on Tuesday finalized a predicted funding increase for nursing homes, while also formalizing changes to several key quality programs — with an eye toward clarifying some parts of the new Medicare payment model for skilled nursing facilities. Under the terms of the 2020 final rule for Medicare skilled nursing facilities, the Centers […]

CMS’s Regulatory Delay: What’s In, What’s Out, and Why Nursing Homes Could ‘Substantially’ Reduce Costs

Skilled nursing facilities could see relief from regulatory burdens if a proposed rule from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) takes effect, and according to the agency, it could lead to millions in savings. Specifically, the rule would overhaul multiple requirements and delay the implementation of regulations related to the Quality Assurance and […]

Verma: CMS ‘Doubling Down’ on Nursing Home Safety Oversight

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) this week issued yet another new proposal aimed at overhauling federal oversight of nursing homes, and the agency’s chief reaffirmed her dedication to the issue. “The Trump administration is empowering residents and their caregivers with information about nursing home safety and quality, and we’re doubling down on […]

CMS Finalizes Reversal of Arbitration Ban in Nursing Homes, Proposes Partial Phase 3 RoP Delay

The federal government on Tuesday finalized a rule that allows skilled nursing operators to use arbitration agreements with their residents, while also proposing a new rule to reduce paperwork burdens that would delay certain aspects of the Requirements of Participation. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) struck something of a compromise with the […]

Parkinson: Releasing ‘Secret’ List Positive for Industry, But Nursing Homes Must Evolve — or Become a Commodity

The release of a so-called “secret” list of nursing homes considered for inclusion in a program for the nation’s worst properties sent shockwaves through the industry early last month — but the man in charge of the for-profit space’s primary trade group says the sunshine is ultimately a good thing for operators. As the skilled […]