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 […]

Proposed Mandatory Payment Model for Dialysis Could Have Skilled Nursing Promise

The federal government on Wednesday unveiled a new proposed payment model for certain kidney-related conditions, and several providers in the space say it could have serious potential for skilled nursing operators. Under the proposed End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Treatment Choices (ETC) model, Medicare would expand coverage of care for kidney diseases and offer financial incentives […]

75% of Nursing Homes ‘Almost Never’ in Compliance with RN Staffing Levels

The gulf between self-reported and payroll-based staffing records for nursing homes continues to widen, with a new study showing a reality that vastly differs from government expectations. The amount of registered nurse (RN) coverage falls well below the standards set by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for most skilled nursing facilities in the […]

Mass. AG Slaps Skyline Owners with 15 Citations for Unpaid Wages, Missing Pay Stubs

A month after the last Skyline Healthcare-operated nursing homes in Massachusetts closed their doors, the state’s attorney general hit the company with multiple citations over unpaid wages and missing payroll documentation. Skyline leaders Joseph and Michael Schwartz failed to pay nearly $65,000 owed to 106 employees in a timely fashion, AG Maura Healey’s office alleged […]

New York Times Probes HUD-Backed Nursing Homes on ‘Secret List’ of Special Focus Candidates

Merging two overarching storylines in the nationwide coverage of skilled nursing facilities, the New York Times on Monday identified 74 properties on a list of potentially troubled nursing homes that have received federally backed loans. The facilities appeared in a previously unreleased collection of more than 400 SNFs considered for inclusion on the Special Focus […]

‘SNF Star Ratings Matter’: Nursing Homes with High Ratings Produce Better Outcomes

Despite ongoing debate about the data used to calculate the federal government’s five-star ratings for nursing homes, a new study found that higher-rated skilled nursing facilities produce better outcomes for residents. Properties with higher ratings on provider performance report cards outperform lower-ranked SNFs on a variety of metrics, researchers from the National Bureau of Economic […]

MedPAC: SNFs, Other Post-Acute Providers Base Assessments on Payments, Not Resident Need

A top government watchdog and advocate for Medicare payment reform on Friday accused post-acute care providers of using mandatory functional assessments to boost payments instead of accurately recording patient needs. As part of its sprawling annual report to Congress on reimbursement issues, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) probed the differences between individual residents’ functional […]

How Skilled Nursing Facilities Can Win Under the New Five-Star System

The federal government hit skilled nursing facilities with a flurry of changes to its quality rating system earlier this year, but by diving into their own data, SNFs can pinpoint how to do better — while making the best use of their limited resources. Some key steps include scrutinizing a facility’s Certification and Survey Provider […]

OIG Calls on CMS to Crack Down on Abuse in Nursing Homes, Other Settings

The federal government’s top health care watchdog on Wednesday released a new report accusing the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) of not doing enough to monitor and punish elder abuse in nursing homes and other settings. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) determined that CMS could perform detailed analyses of diagnosis […]

CMS ‘Just Getting Started’ on Nursing Home Oversight Amid ‘Secret’ List Controversy

The federal government on Wednesday again defended its work to regulate and punish underperforming nursing homes, as the controversy surrounding a “secret” list of troubled skilled nursing facilities entered its third day. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) chief medical officer Kate Goodrich confirmed a Tuesday report that the agency will soon begin releasing […]

CMS Could Release Monthly List of Special Focus Candidates After Senators’ Report

Federal officials could soon begin releasing a previously undisclosed list of underperforming nursing homes targeted for potential inclusion in the Special Focus Facility program, SNN has learned. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) roster of “candidates” for Special Focus Facility status became public on Monday, when a bipartisan pair of senators released the […]

Senators Release ‘Secret’ List of Troubled Nursing Homes Considered for Special Focus

A bipartisan pair of U.S. senators on Monday released a previously undisclosed list of more than 400 nursing homes under consideration for placement on the federal government’s roster of properties with serious quality issues. The list, furnished by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), consists of “candidates” for the Special Focus Facilities (SFF) […]