CMS

3M receives specific codes

3M Critical & Chronic Care Solutions Division announced the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services assigned product-specific Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System codes for the 3M™ Coban™ 2 Layer Lite Compression System (Cat #2794).

Another revenue stream threatened?

Another revenue stream threatened?

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For just about every skilled nursing facility out there, this is probably a good time to break out the flop sweat. That is, unless the prospect of being culled from one of your most vital revenue streams is nothing to worry about.

New ACO proposals could leave long-term care providers smiling

New ACO proposals could leave long-term care providers smiling

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If nothing else, federal health officials displayed Monday that they are intent on getting this accountable care organization (ACO) thing right. Or at least closer to "right" than it has been.

Brennan to lead new CMS office

Brennan to lead new CMS office

Niall Brennan is the first Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services Chief Data Officer, the agency announced. He will lead the new Office of Enterprise Data and Analytics.

Replace the Five Star Quality Ratings system with points?

Replace the Five Star Quality Ratings system with points?

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There's a need to fix what's broken with the Five Star nursing homes-ratings system, and the way to do it is obvious.

The schizophrenia of patient-centered care

The schizophrenia of patient-centered care

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Is it me or sometimes do the wide interpretations within the State Operations Manual (the dreaded "RED book") make you want to question your entire existence? I mean, we've been working so diligently toward Culture Change and the true meaning of person-centered care. Nationally, I thought we were making headway. But nooooooo.

CMS promises ICD-10 software six months in advance

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Providers will receive needed coding and billing software six months before the ICD-10 transition date, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has announced. This is double the lead time that providers had for a planned 2014 transition, which was delayed by a year.

Also in the news for Nov. 4, 2014 . . .

Health center owner fined $43 million in nursing home patient recruiting scam ... CMS defines "one-on-one" provider training ... Men shorter than five-foot-five are 50% more likely to die from dementia ... UK docs to begin telling patients their 'brain age'

Antipsychotics goal gets reset

Antipsychotics goal gets reset

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Long-term care providers are being asked to reduce the use of antipsychotic medications among residents by 25% by the end of 2015, and 30% by the end of 2016.

Also in the news for Oct. 31, 2014 . . .

Minnix hopes White House aging conference will spur 'huge shift' ... CMS finalizes home health payment reductions ... Dementia is now No. 1 killer of women in England

Also in the news for Oct. 30, 2014 . . .

CMS offers hospitals more flexibility to settle disputed inpatient claims ... Nursing homes interested in new secondhand smoke detector, Dartmouth researchers say ... Australian researchers announce Alzheimer's blood test progress ... SCAN Foundation releases blueprint for person-centered healthcare systems

CMS expands therapy payment research

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The government is expanding its research into alternative therapy payments, to consider more holistic changes to the way Medicare reimburses skilled nursing facilities, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced Tuesday.

CMS: Nurse shortage means hospices can keep using contracted workers

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Hospices can continue to rely on contract nurses because an ongoing nurse shortage is preventing providers from meeting their staffing needs, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced in a recent memorandum to state survey agencies.

Hospice billings changed

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently updated instructions on coding hospice claims. Billing staffs should be aware of these changes, which went into effect Oct. 1, CMS stated in a memorandum about the Medicare manual update.

SNF, CCRC spending expected to rise 69%

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Spending on nursing homes and continuing care retirement communities is expected to roughly keep pace with total U.S. healthcare spending during the next decade, according to the annual "National Health Expenditures Projections" report released last month.

Lawmakers demand answers about rating system quirks

Lawmakers demand answers about rating system quirks

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After The New York Times noted that providers are apparently gaming the Five Star rating system by enhancing staffing and quality data, federal lawmakers quickly put an indignant pen to paper.

Reporting neglected, OIG says

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Slightly more than half of the nation's nursing facilities reported abuse or neglect allegations as required in 2012, a new report from the Office of Inspector General alleges. Such relatively low compliance indicates that more guidance and oversight is warranted, the report concludes.

Also in the news for Oct. 1, 2014 . . .

CMS releases new version of software for collecting assessment information ... CT hospitals must now inform patients of observation status ... CA assisted living facilities face multiple requirements under new laws ... Govt. launches Open Payments website

Also in the news for Sept. 30, 2014 . . .

CMS clarifies appropriate use of power strips in long-term care resident rooms ...GAO: Integrating Medicare and Medicaid may not reduce costs on dual-eligible care ... Brookdale discriminated against worker with fibromyalgia, EEOC claims ... State standards for physician access under Medicaid managed care vary widely, OIG finds

Providers must see clearly before they CHOW down

Providers must see clearly before they CHOW down

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When a skilled nursing facility changes ownership, the change is known in healthcare vernacular as a change of ownership or "CHOW." Because this could wind up endangering a Medicare provider agreement, It is imperative that more people understand the process, know the parties they're involved with and develop better awareness of the regulatory issues involved.

Senators push CMS to expand program for long-term care outside nursing homes

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services should loosen regulations to allow more people to receive care in the community rather than in nursing homes, a bipartisan group of Senators wrote in a recent letter to the top CMS official.

White House to providers: New antibiotic regs on the way

White House to providers: New antibiotic regs on the way

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Long-term care providers should take pride in their antipsychotic reduction efforts, and certainly should work hard to meet the new goals announced Friday. But it should not escape their notice that just a day earlier, the White House released an ambitious national plan for addressing antibiotic resistant infections. The plan suggests that a facility's antibiotic stewardship is about to join its antipsychotics rate as a defining feature of quality in the eyes of the government.

Antipsychotics reduction goal raised to 30% by end of 2016, CMS and provider groups announce

Antipsychotics reduction goal raised to 30% by end of 2016, CMS and provider groups announce

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Long-term care providers are being asked to reduce the use of antipsychotic medications among residents by 25% by the end of 2015, and 30% by the end of 2016. Providers have already achieved a 17.1% reduction since 2011.

Also in the news for Sept. 19, 2014

Americans are the most worried about losing their eyesight as they age, poll says .... AHCA says MedPAC Chairman is 'spot-on' with three-day stay comments ... Medicare Advantage enrollment rises for fifth straight year, CMS says.

Medicare Part B could have saved $110 million, OIG asserts

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If the Medicare Part B program had used average Medicare Part D drug dispensing and fee rates, it would have saved the government $110 million in 2011, according to a report from the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General released Sept. 16.

ICD-10 is around the corner, for real this time

ICD-10 is around the corner, for real this time

There's a looming massive report on all the hospital readmissions data in your area and the strategic plan your facility needs to pursue. It involves talking to lots of employees, gathering data, doing statistics and the actual writing, not to mention proofreading, and having your boss sign off on it. It's due Oct. 15.

Stakeholders need to prepare for the loss of long-term care's exemption to e-prescribing

Stakeholders need to prepare for the loss of long-term care's exemption to e-prescribing

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is set to lift long-term care's exemption from its e-prescribing rule as of Nov. 1. This is bigger news than most realize right now, and there has been no indication CMS is going to postpone things.

November 1: Will you be ready?

November 1: Will you be ready?

This year, it is the day after Halloween that might be scary. On November 1, prescribers, pharmacies and facilities in the long-term-care industry must cease the transmission of electronic medication orders via the HL7 and e-fax methods that predominate today.

The end of fee for service

The end of fee for service

The seeds that have flowered into the burgeoning of ACOs - groups of providers accepting the responsibility, and risk, for caring for the health of a designated patient population according to defined quality benchmarks (CMS measures quality of care using 33 measures in four key domains) - was planted long ago, in the baby boom.

CMS 'Open Door Forum' Wednesday

The next Skilled Nursing Facilities/Long-Term Care Open Door Forum operated by federal regulators will be Wednesday.

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