‘It’s Not Reality’: Health Dimensions’ CEO on the Ripple Effects of the Nursing Home Staffing Rule

As staffing shortages continue to drive nursing home closures across the U.S, sector leaders such as Erin Hennessey, President and CEO of Health Dimensions Group, are expressing deep concerns about the minimum staffing rule that will only worsen the crisis of access, especially in rural counties where labor is in very short supply. “There’s no […]

‘An Extinction Event’: Industry Leaders Blast Finalized Nursing Home Staffing Mandate

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Monday unveiled the finalized minimum staffing standards for nursing homes, drawing sharp – and deeply apprehensive – responses from leaders in the sector. CEOs of nursing home owners and operators and leaders of industry associations were all but unanimous in their reactions; among those who spoke […]

Medicare Advantage Growth Could Normalize, but Nursing Home Leaders Call for Rate Floor and Other Changes

While Medicare Advantage (MA) has grown steadily in the last several years, leaders in the nursing home sector speculate whether increased federal regulation – and perhaps even more importantly, changes in the consumer experience – will slow its growth. This would come as a welcome development to many nursing home leaders, who have been struggling […]

Quality Reporting Program Changes to Bring Nursing Homes ‘Into the Realm of Health Equity’

Skilled nursing facilities are set to see changes to the Quality Reporting Program (QRP), with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) making moves to address social determinants of health (SDOH) – mainly, adding factors such as living situation, food, utilities, and transportation. “These quality measures are leading us into the realm of health […]

HDG: How Hospitals, Nursing Homes Can Minimize ‘Headwinds’ From Policy Oversight of Medicare Advantage Plans

As nursing homes and hospitals confront lingering concerns with inpatient backlogs, lengths of hospital stay, and tighter operating margins, the growth of Medicare Advantage plans – and now greater scrutiny over their prior authorization protocols by the federal government – will only serve to squeeze profits margins. “So those are additional headwinds that will benefit […]

PwC: Cautious Optimism, Apprehension To Follow Nursing Home Dealmaking into 2024

Dealmaking in 2024 comes with cautious optimism and some apprehension from industry leaders in health care, including those in the nursing home space, as deal volume continues to be buffeted by macroeconomic headwinds.  In line with the skilled nursing space, overall health services deal volumes through Nov. 15 have declined 13% compared to 2022 levels, […]

The Quotes That Defined 2023 in Skilled Nursing — and Hint at What’s Ahead

As the Covid-19 public health emergency officially ended in 2023, the nursing home sector continued to face lingering troubles across many facets of the business even if spread of disease – and death resulting from it – diminished as a concern. Chief among troubles that continued to plague nursing homes included workforce shortages and expansion […]

Repositioning Nursing Homes For Acuity, More Closures, Less Deal Making Expected in 2024

As the skilled nursing industry heads toward a new year with continued labor shortages and reimbursement gaps, service repositioning and closures among operators are expected trends for the space. And although there are signs of positivity in the form of increased Medicaid reimbursement in some states, extensive rural closures are creating “nursing home deserts” and […]

The Future of Nursing Homes: CEOs of Brickyard, Bartley, HDG Talk Medicare Advantage, AI and Staffing Proposal

The landscape at skilled nursing facilities is evolving rapidly, influenced by factors such as changing regulations, workforce challenges, and the rise of Medicare Advantage, and the minimum staffing proposal only complicates matters. This view was expressed by industry leaders in the opening session of the Skilled Nursing News’ RETHINK conference Wednesday. Panelists – Wesley Rogers, […]

Why Additional VBP Funding for Nursing Homes May Be More Trouble Than Gain

Nursing home operators participating in a value-based purchasing program (VBP) might be able to derive greater benefits in coming years from higher scores based on new measures, as the federal government seeks to reward organizations who prioritize health equity, among other factors. Joel Van Eaton, EVP of post-acute care regulatory affairs and education at Broad […]

With CMS Nixing Mandatory Patient Satisfaction Measure, Nursing Homes Remain ‘Behind the Times’

The issue of formally requiring patient surveys for nursing homes, similar to surveys mandated in other segments of health care, has long been a source of debate – one getting stirred up again after federal policy makers decided to nix patient satisfaction measures from the recently issued final prospective payment rule for 2024. The Centers […]

[UPDATED] CMS’ 2024 SNF Final Rule Seen as Insufficient for Payment Rates While Advancing Unfair Measures

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule Monday that updates Medicare payment policies and rates for skilled nursing facilities under the Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System for fiscal year 2024. The federal agency estimates that the aggregate impact of the payment policies in the latest rule would result in […]

Why Nursing Homes Should Expect Far-Reaching Effects from CMS’ Expanded VBP Measures

Value-based care program (VBP) measures proposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have long loomed over skilled nursing operators, and now it seems more are finally on their way for 2026. Staffing-related measures, rehospitalization, discharge and infection prevention are all areas of focus for CMS’ proposed and finalized measures alike. Moreover, proposals […]

MDS Changes Could Have Ripple Effects on Nursing Home Readmissions, Citations

Staying informed about upcoming changes to the Minimum Data Sets (MDS) will be vital for skilled nursing operators come October, when the new changes are implemented. These changes include more finely-tuned definitions and more data collection. Section GG of MDS, which measures the functional status and goals of residents in their self-care, mobility, and communication […]

Innovation and Uncertainty: Nursing Home Providers Forge New Paths for a Post-Covid Era

As the Skilled Nursing News’ CLINICAL event in Washington D.C. came to a close last month, industry experts left with staffing concerns amid labor shortages and pending legislation on minimum staffing standards. However, operators also shared optimism over their innovations in corporate and clinical practices as they continued to confront higher acuity and tighter regulation. […]

Nursing Home Providers Enter Staff Training Phase for MDS Switch, Concerned About Agency Workers and State Variation

As the skilled nursing industry steadily moves toward an Oct. 1 deadline for changes to the Minimum Data Set (MDS), operators are stressing the importance of training staff to help accurately code under the new system, a byproduct of the switch to the Patient Driven Payment Model (PDPM). While details of the most notable shift […]

‘Reacting Much Faster Now’: Costs, Referral Bottlenecks Drive Hospital Decisions to Own, Sell or Partner with SNFs

Even as acute care systems are finding it harder to place patients in post-acute care facilities, hospital leaders have differing takes on whether it makes sense to own, sell or partner with facilities to relieve this bottleneck of referrals along the care continuum. While skilled nursing care has historically made up a small fraction of […]

Executive Outlook 2023: Reimagine How We Deliver Skilled Nursing Care

“The sector has a tremendous opportunity to reimagine how we deliver care.” These are the words of Nate Schema, president and CEO of The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society, one of the largest providers of skilled nursing services in the United States. Good Sam is reimagining care in part through a $350 million virtual care […]

Top Skilled Nursing Trends for 2023

Economic uncertainty, staffing shortages, looming federal regulations, a new COVID variant and major changes to the Minimum Data Set (MDS) are just a few of the challenges facing the skilled nursing sector at the dawn of 2023. But a new year is also a time for optimism. Favorable Medicaid policies, the growth of strong regional […]