Price Tag for Testing All Nursing Home Residents, Staff for COVID-19 Once: $440 Million

The nation’s largest organization representing nursing homes on Wednesday pegged the one-time cost of testing each resident and staff member in the United States at $440 million, arguing that substantially more funding for long-term care will be necessary to meet more stringent testing mandates. The American Health Care Association arrived at that figure by adding […]

Aid Bill Would Pause MFAR Medicaid Crackdown During COVID-19, Boost Federal Match by 14%

House Democrats on Tuesday introduced a major aid package with a provision that would indefinitely delay the implementation of a controversial rule that imperiled billions in Medicaid funding for skilled nursing facilities. The bill also would boost the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP), or Washington’s share of state Medicaid rates, by 14% — up from […]

Under Interim Final Rule, Mandatory COVID-19 Reporting for Nursing Homes to Begin This Week

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Friday released an interim final rule that, among other provisions, will require nursing homes to begin reporting detailed COVID-19 information to the federal government this week. While CMS and the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) had previously announced the requirement — after weeks of […]

‘Patchwork’ Government COVID Response Put Long-Term Care Residents at Risk

While the federal government has provided sweeping guidelines for nursing homes in the fight against COVID-19, the state-level response has been wildly inconsistent, according to a new analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation — a disconnect that may have increased the risks for vulnerable residents in certain areas. “This state-by-state approach to the COVID-19 pandemic […]

Parkinson Warns of State Reopening Plans’ Impact on Nursing Homes, Potential Medicare Relief Clawbacks

Citing current patterns of COVID-19 infection rates at nursing homes, the leader of the nation’s largest post-acute and long-term care association on Wednesday warned against states opening their economies too early — a move that he said could only worsen the crisis. “We are very concerned about states opening up too early for this simple […]

FEMA Could Begin Sending PPE to Nursing Homes in Early May

With personal protective equipment (PPE) in short supply across the country, skilled nursing facilities have felt left out in efforts to bolster health care capacity in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic — even though by most measures, they are arguably on the front lines of the battle to contain the illness caused by the […]

Multi-State Nursing Home Operators Navigate Conflicting COVID-19 Rules

Skilled nursing operators across the U.S. are grappling with the challenge of caring for patients most vulnerable to COVID-19 while staying on top of a variety of state and federal guidelines. To do that without getting overwhelmed, it’s critical to have all the various components of an operation working together — and for operators with […]

Multiple States Take Steps to Shield Nursing Homes From Liability Amid COVID-19 — But Rules Vary

Health care providers across the continuum have grappled with major challenges in providing care for patients with COVID-19, and several states have taken steps to shield them from lawsuits related to care provided during the national emergency. Skilled nursing facilities are often included in those liability protections, but the extent to which the protections apply […]

PPE Shortages to Play Central Role in Future Nursing Home Lawsuits

Problems with securing sufficient quantities of personal protective equipment (PPE) span the health care continuum, but in the skilled nursing setting, many providers are grappling with severe shortages — even as they try to contain a contagious disease that presents unique dangers to their patient population. Widespread shortages of masks and gowns, coupled with a […]

As Death Toll Tops 3,000, CMS Could Release New COVID-19 Reporting Guidance for Nursing Homes This Week

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) could formally release new COVID-19 reporting guidelines for nursing homes as soon as this week, sources told the Wall Street Journal Sunday. The publication had few other details about the exact scope of a potential CMS order, with a spokesperson telling the Wall Street Journal that “the […]

AHCA Urges Nursing Homes to Report COVID-19 Cases to State Survey Agencies

As calls for the federal government to release lists of nursing homes with confirmed COVID-19 cases grow louder, the industry’s largest trade group on Saturday urged members to report cases to state survey agencies — as well as local health authorities and family members. American Health Care Association president and CEO Mark Parkinson framed the […]

Amid Shortages, Using PPE According to CMS Guidelines Could Cost Nursing Homes $10K a Day — Or More

Updated guidelines on the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) are causing major headaches for health care providers across the continuum, as both acute and post-acute care settings grapple with supply shortages and a surge in cases of COVID-19. Those headaches include grappling with significant shortages of equipment in the face of the highly contagious […]

As Nursing Homes with Cases Reach 400, AHCA Advises Operators to Assume All Untested Patients Positive for COVID-19

One of the country’s major nursing home trade groups is advising its members to assume that unless a person has tested negative for COVID-19 prior to admission, that patient has the virus. This is regardless of whether or not they have symptoms, according to guidance from the American Health Care Association (AHCA) released on Monday. […]

Some Managed Care Plans Lift Restrictions on Skilled Nursing Coverage Amid COVID-19 — But Not All

Multiple managed care plans have made changes to their procedures for admissions to the skilled nursing setting amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with several major companies suspending prior authorization requirements for admissions to a skilled nursing facility. The changes, however, are not uniform — and that’s if the managed care organization (MCO) chooses to make […]

AHCA’s Parkinson: Orders Requiring Nursing Homes to Admit COVID-19 Patients Will Increase Death Toll

New York State has already told nursing homes that they cannot deny admissions solely because of a positive COVID-19 test — nor can they require residents to submit to testing as a condition of entry. Multiple other states are now mulling similar orders, according to the American Health Care Association, which on Saturday warned that […]