Senate Scraps Health Care Bill, Skilled Nursing Operators Exhale

Senate Republicans scuttled their most recent attempt to pass health care reform legislation after several members announced their opposition to the bill, putting proposed Obamacare replacement on hold — and prompting skilled nursing operators and advocates to breathe a temporary sigh of relief. “We appreciate the Senators that hit the pause button on this debate,” […]

Finding a Structural Solution to Skilled Nursing Staffing Woes

Retaining a staff of talented, motivated employees has remained one of the most vexing problems for skilled nursing operators, as a recovering economy has drastically increased the competition for the best workers. One SNF provider has successfully turned to a clear organizational structure for an answer, while some other senior housing providers have taken even more novel approaches, according […]

Non-Doctor Specialists Provide More Care in Skilled Nursing

The number of doctors practicing in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) has dropped, while the number of non-doctor SNF specialists has nearly doubled, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Internal Medicine. Headed by Dr. Joan Teno of the Cambia Palliative Care Center of Excellence at the University of […]

Nursing Occupancy Took Expected Dip in Second Quarter

Just as experts predicted, occupancy rates for nursing facilities declined between the first and second quarters of 2017. Nursing care facilities were 86.5% full in the second quarter, according to the most recent figures from the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC). That’s down from the 87.2% first-quarter figure presented in the […]

Bipartisan Bill Seeks to Strengthen Medicare Plans for SNF Residents

As ongoing Obamacare repeal efforts cloud the future of Medicaid, a bipartisan pair of representatives introduced a bill they claim will help strengthen Medicare Advantage access for the most vulnerable seniors. H.R. 3168 would reauthorize Medicare Special Needs Plans, which are generally restricted to recipients who need institutional care, must manage chronic illnesses, or qualify for […]

Louisiana SNFs Have Extra Protection from Potential Medicaid Cuts

While skilled nursing providers across the U.S. fret over potentially big Medicaid cuts, Louisiana SNFs can breathe slightly easier. That’s because nursing homes there are shielded against Medicaid budget cuts both by statutes and the state’s constitution, The Advocate of Baton Rouge, La. reported. Furthermore, Louisiana — which spent more than $1 billion on nursing homes this […]

Pros and Cons for Skilled Nursing Under Senate’s Trumpcare Bill

The Senate’s proposed health care legislation, like the bill that passed the House, includes significant cuts to Medicaid, which is the top payer for skilled nursing services. This presents obvious challenges for SNFs, but also may provide some positive outcomes. In the first quarter of 2017, 65.2% of patient days were attributed to Medicaid, and the Medicaid patient […]

Illinois Must Pay $586 Million in Medicaid Per Month

Illinois has been ordered by a U.S. judge to pay its Medicaid bills — to the tune of more than half a billion dollars per month. Illinois must pay a staggering $586 million per month to Medicaid providers to ensure continued care for beneficiaries, a U.S. judge ruled on June 30. The ruling comes after […]

ManorCare Misses Latest Rent Payment to QCP

Skilled nursing operator HCR ManorCare, Inc. missed another rent payment, the latest milestone in a long-developing conflict with its landlord, Quality Care Properties, Inc. (NYSE: QCP). QCP, the real estate investment trust (REIT) that serves as ManorCare’s primary landlord, announced Wednesday that the provider had missed its July 3 rent deadline as attempts to restructure […]

Why Dark Skilled Nursing History Could Repeat Itself

Various health care agencies and groups have expressed concerns over the effects of Obamacare repeal on Americans’ access to skilled nursing care, as well as the ongoing viability of SNFs as a business amid steep Medicaid cuts. At least one commentator also claims that the GOP health plans could lead to a return to the […]

Why Home Care Can’t Compare to Skilled Nursing Facilities

Most newly admitted nursing home residents could not be safely and cost-effectively diverted to home- and community-based services (HCBS) because many of them have health issues, such as dementia and stroke, that require high levels of care, according to a Canadian study in the July issue of JAMDA. Only about one in 20 nursing home residents could […]

Long-Term Nursing Home Stays Decline in 35 States

Most states throughout the U.S. have reduced long-term nursing home stays for Medicare beneficiaries, though the numbers vary significantly. That’s according to a new “State Scorecard” report from AARP, the SCAN Foundation and Commonwealth Fund, which examined the factors that determine long-term care for seniors and people with disabilities. AARP released similar reports in 2011 and 2014. The […]

CMS Backtracks on Arbitration Ban in Long-Term Care

Months after trying unsuccessfully to ban the pre-dispute arbitration agreements in long-term care, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is now proposing that the controversial practice be allowed after all. CMS’ new proposed rule was published in a Federal Register document on Monday afternoon. It comes after skilled nursing providers pushed back against […]

LeadingAge Aims for Real-World Impact with UMass Research Center

Seeking real-world connections for its research into long-term services and supports (LTSS), LeadingAge looked past private colleges and recently partnered with the public University of Massachusetts Boston to create a center dedicated to exploring the future of LTSS programs. The new LeadingAge LTSS Center at UMass Boston will use the university’s graduate students and deep […]