Pennsylvania Official Pushes for Better SNF Vetting, Warns of Workforce Crisis

The state of Pennsylvania should adopt stronger policies for vetting nursing home operators in the wake of the Skyline Healthcare collapse, a report issued Tuesday from Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale recommended. “Nearly 90,000 Pennsylvanians live in more than 700 nursing homes throughout the state, and they represent just a fraction of our aging population,” […]

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 […]

Even as Demand Rises, Nursing Homes Face Major Behavioral Health Hurdles

Adding behavioral health services has frequently been floated as a way that nursing homes can diversify their offerings and attract new residents — particularly as demand for the treatment of depression and other mental health issues continues to grow among older Americans. But a significant swath of operators report persistent challenges in caring for residents […]

Immigration Crackdown Could Hurt Skilled Nursing Operators Beyond Staffing

The current presidential administration’s hard-line stance on immigration has caused serious concerns among health care employers, as any efforts that could shrink the available pool of workers will only exacerbate persistent workforce pressures. But in addition to representing a sizable chunk of the average nursing home’s staff, immigrant workers also contribute more to the trust […]

Nursing Home Strike Threat Drives Momentum for Medicaid Rate Boosts

The looming specter of a strike at nursing homes in Connecticut has prompted leaders in the state to support increases to daily Medicaid rates for institutional care. Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont this week expressed support for three Medicaid rate boosts through 2021, a move that the CT Mirror — which first reported the news — […]

Focus on Behavioral Residents Lands SNFs $10.5M to Expand Services

As the prevalence of behavioral health issues grows among the nursing home-aged population, one group of skilled nursing facilities received a major grant to help improve mental health care among its residents. CareChoice Cooperative, which is based in St. Paul, Minnesota, earlier this year received $10.5 million to bring the Resident Centered Behavioral Health (RCBH) […]

Doctors, Software, Training: Preparing for ‘Non-Negotiable’ PDPM Coding Pressures

Starting October 1, skilled nursing facility operators will have no choice but to become proficient with a specific type of medical coding that previously had no bearing on reimbursements — and leading industry voices say there are multiple paths to getting there. ICD-10 codes, specific diagnosis identifications long used by hospitals, will play a key […]

CMS: Hundreds More Buildings Could Receive One-Star Staffing Ratings Under New Rules

The new, stricter skilled nursing staffing standards slated for implementation by the federal government next month weren’t entirely unexpected, but they raise questions about the broader problem of understaffed facilities — and hundreds of buildings could be in the crosshairs. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced March 5 that it would overhaul […]

Greystone Taps Senior Living Vet Handelson to Run Chain of 28 SNFs

Skilled nursing operator Greystone Healthcare Management announced the appointment of Stephanie Handelson, a longtime leader in the senior living industry, as CEO. Handelson formally assumed the top spot at the chain of 28 skilled nursing facilities on Monday, succeeding interim CEO Gerry Jenich. The Tampa, Fla.-based firm operates as the Greystone Health Network, with home […]

Medicaid Pressures, Worker Shortages Lead to SNF Closure Wave in Wisconsin

Nursing homes in Wisconsin are blaming the state’s low Medicaid reimbursements for a wave of nursing home closures and persistent financial struggles, Wisconsin Public Radio reported earlier this month. Nursing home advocates are asking lawmakers in the state to invest $83.5 million in the next two-year budget as a result, the media organization reported. The […]

Investing in Specialized Care Will Drive Skilled Nursing Occupancy in 2019

Adding specialized services could be a daunting task for skilled nursing providers coming off of a year of occupancy rate freefall, at least for most of 2018. But as they prepare for the new Medicare reimbursement system, the role of specialization in driving occupancy will only grow. That’s according to a webinar hosted Wednesday by […]

Hospital Staffs Don’t Always Know Why SNFs Make the ‘Preferred’ Cut

The staff members tasked with guiding residents from hospitals to post-acute care options frequently feel restricted during the process — and often don’t even know why certain SNFs are classified as preferred partners. Anti-steering rules, or regulations that prevent hospitals from recommending specific skilled nursing facilities, can sometimes serve as a general gag for discharge […]

IntelyCare Raises $10.8M to Expand Skilled Nursing Staffing Platform

A staffing software provider aimed at long-term care operators on Thursday announced an injection of $10.8 million in additional funding as it attempts to expand beyond its current four-state footprint. The Quincy, Mass.-based IntelyCare raised the funds in a Series A round led by Leerink Revelation Partners, along with Longmeadow Capital, LRV Health, and former […]

Employee Satisfaction Has Direct Impact on Bottom Line in Skilled Nursing

A recent survey found a strong correlation between employee satisfaction and resident engagement — which in turn boosts referrals. That means that engaging employees can be a path to better returns on investment. “The happier the employees, the happier the residents, the better the money,” Todd Schmiedeler of Trilogy Health Services said at a Wednesday […]

Skilled Nursing Leaders Share Winning Hiring, Retention Strategies

The workforce crisis in skilled nursing can often seem like a problem without an immediate solution: There are only so many qualified workers in any given area, and with unemployment at record lows, competition for competent candidates hasn’t been this fierce in a generation. Plus, with reimbursement and regulatory pressures, skilled nursing operators often don’t […]

Secrets to Success at the Top SNF in the Country for Rehospitalization Rate

A privately operated skilled nursing facility for veterans in Utah ranked number one in the country* for rehospitalization rates — a feat its administrator ascribes to both smart staffing and a prime location. The Southern Utah Veterans Home tied for the number-one spot in a recent ranking of all 15,421 nursing homes in the United […]

Starbucks Opens New Front in Staffing Wars: Senior Care Benefits

Skilled nursing and senior housing operators often point to wage gains at retail chains as a major reason behind the industry’s persistent staffing woes. This week, one of the country’s largest foodservice employers unveiled another attractive perk that could lure workers away from long-term care: heavily subsidized senior care services for employees who juggle work […]

Skilled Nursing Operators Top List of Best Places to Work in Aging

In a long-term health care era plagued by staffing concerns and tough headlines about nursing homes, a pair of skilled nursing facilities topped a new list of the best workplaces in aging services. Gurwin Jewish Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Commack, N.Y. and Van Dyk Health Care in Hawthorne, N.J. came in first and second […]

15% of Skilled Nursing Assistants Live in Poverty Amid Stagnant Wages

Skilled nursing and seniors housing executives have blamed wage pressures in part for their struggles in recent years, but a new analysis finds that nursing assistants haven’t seen their wages increase in a decade. The median nursing assistant brought in $12.78 per hour in 2007, compared to an inflation-adjusted $12.84 a full 10 years later, […]