When you ask seniors for their take on twerking, Kanye West and social media, you're bound to get some colorful answers.
In the 403-page Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services proposed rule, there has been a lot of discussion around arbitration, quality and education. But buried within also are new regulations around compliance programs.
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Although I haven't played it much lately, I like the game of golf as a good analogy for task management, or simply getting through life's day-to-day challenges. It doesn't matter if you've ever played, or even like the game. Among other things, it also has noteworthy implications about your leadership style.
I firmly believe the old saying that a picture's worth a thousand words. But for every strong, visual message photograph conveys, there are dozens of more messages that it doesn't, or can't, get across.
Can someone please tell me exactly what "melty cheese" is? The product exists in commercials but is apparently not to be found elsewhere. And as far as I can tell, no state regulators are cracking down on firms lauding it — something that does not actually exist. Lucky them.
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- Dementia Care
Despite my love of Halloween, there is one component of it that is distinctly not for me: Horror movies. Still, I'm enough of a pop culture enthusiast that I can appreciate those with an appetite for scary movies and their sequels. If you want to watch the 10 "Halloween" movies or six versions of "Paranormal Activity," I'm not going to judge you. (Much.)
Like observers of a mother driving herself to exhaustion and sickness by taking care of her children day after day, U.S. providers are seeing measured declines in their caregivers. The numbers reveal just how bad it is.
Moving is always exciting to me. This isn't because I enjoy the stressful process of apartment hunting and packing my life away into boxes like a real-life game of Tetris, because, let's face it, I don't.
Who has the most dangerous jobs in America? Police officers? Fire fighters? Loggers?
For the past decade, healthcare experts, including those in long-term care, have been drumming the beat of a looming nursing shortage. A new study details why the shortage might not be as terrible as feared.
I was truly surprised when I didn't hear long-term care leaders excitedly jumping around, yelling, "See! See! Us too! Us too!" last week. It was a simple report, sure, but one that should have sent the frantic-meter bouncing.
It's no wonder that the latest experiment in shorter, more efficient work days comes out of Europe.
I first heard about the sisters of Fraternite Notre Dame last winter, when two boilers broke down at a church they were running on Chicago's West Side. The public ultimately came to their rescue then. A different crowd, however, is now quashing its dreams of expanding into long-term care service.
You have to hand it to the folks at the National Council on Aging, and their affiliated partners. They really know how to tastefully make light of a harrowing situation.
"We don't do email." At first I wasn't sure if I heard the person on the other end of the phone correctly. Here was a long-term care provider in this, the year 2015, who didn't use email. At all.
Signature HealthCARE is known as a high-end provider of skilled care services. Starting next month, it will also begin selling health insurance. As unusual as that might seem, it may not be long before additional operators are following suit.
There is little that makes McKnight's readers as defensive as publishing a story about racial disparities in long-term care. The comments often complain that access to care is complicated and shouldn't be simplified to focus on race.
It's fairly likely that one or more of your employees will be leaving soon. That's why you need to read this. It will make your organization healthier, and in ways you might have never imagined.
We like to assume that healthcare workers are a trustworthy bunch, especially when they're entrusted with caring for people's' loved ones. But manipulation of data, from patients' records to medication logs, seems to be a trend. What happens when a case of electronic data manipulation hits closer to home?
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Long-term care tends to ignore home- or community-based service technology and data mining, but the era of bundled payments, partnerships and accountable care mean it's time to pay attention. Of course, technology gets healthcare services only so far.
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- Emergency Planning
Professionals are often told it's in their best interest to network. Friend of long-term care Kerrick Butler has brought new meaning to the concept.
A new report is out and it is a veritable time capsule of trends driving long-term care. Now in its 30th year, CliftonLarsonAllen's Skilled Nursing Facility Cost Comparison Report came about when the company's long-term clients began asking how they measured up to others.
You can bet that nursing home-hired actuaries, lawyers, consultants and other assorted bean counters are going over new rules with a fine-tooth comb. They are looking for the next generation of potential revenue streams — and any loopholes to them. If they exist, they will be found, and implemented.
Lately it's been irking me that not only thank-you notes but business etiquette seems to be falling by the wayside. We're not talking about using the wrong spoon at dinner, but a genuine failure of manners.
If you didn't work in long-term care and I asked you to specify what these five states — Illinois, Washington, Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico — have in common, we could be waiting for your answer until Donald Trump had more than a snowball's chance in hell at winning the Republican nomination for president.
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- Granny Cams
Mary Tellis-Nayak often makes it a point to visit nursing homes in other countries when she and her husband, Vivian, travel. A 2012 trip to his hometown of Mangalore, India, was no different.
Many senior living professionals have had to settle for content that was created for another sector that's not quite them. Or worse, settle for stuff that has little to do with their day job. The good news is that those days are officially over. McKnightsSeniorLiving.com is now live.
We tend to paint hospice with broad strokes. A new study indicates how it can vary by states, with Oregon emerging as the best example of a place that seems to be doing it right.
The ability to make a senior feel a part of the outside world can mean the difference between having a catatonic lump or a bon vivant on your hands. Luckily, there's never been a better time to overcome mobility issues.
It looks like Snapchat will take the crown in this week's edition of "What Smartphone App Is Causing Providers Grief Now?!" (Yelp won that distinction last week, for those keeping score at home).
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It would appear that nursing facilities are becoming more reluctant to admit younger people with mental illnesses. At the risk of sounding like an insensitive jerk, that's a good thing.
Whether it's a J.K. Rowling novel, Tom Clancy adventure or run-of-the-sawmill book of government regulations, when there's 403 pages, it's going to take time to digest. With regulation revisions, heartburn often follows.
In an attempt to cook, a good lesson emerges in knowing one's limits.
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- Occupational Safety And Health Administration
I'm one of those people who see the numbers ticking down on a crosswalk signal as a challenge. Five seconds? No problem. Three? Let's just say if you've ever been waiting at a stoplight only to hear a blond-haired pedestrian yell "WE CAN MAKE IT," I was probably the culprit.
Among the police, it's known as the blue wall of silence. This unwritten rule regularly comes into play when a fellow officer's errors, poor behavior or possible crimes are under scrutiny. Its basic message: Keep your mouth shut.
If there's one service long-term care providers almost universally dislike, it's online websites geared towards consumers and healthcare.
Things have been kind of tough lately, haven't they? And they're probably going to get tougher, right? If you have thought or possibly mouthed those words yourself, stop. Just stop. Quit your complaining ... for one day at least.
She spends her free time doing puzzles, and walking around outside, has cataracts and high blood pressure. She celebrated her most recent birthday with a special cake made by her loved ones and caregivers. That description could probably fit any number of your residents, but I'm willing to bet they don't stay fit by somersaulting down hills — or by snacking on 20 to 40 pounds of bamboo each day.
Many operators probably broke out in flop sweat earlier this week when House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) endorsed a $15 minimum wage.
So much for the dog days of summer getting close. Long-term care advocates were already at full woof on Tuesday — and that's a good thing.
It's always tempting to think reports issued from the Government Accountability Office are written by bureaucrats sharpening pencils and tapping into computer databases.
Given the nature of what they do, it's not surprising that nursing homes sometimes find themselves targeted in lawsuits. Unfortunately, it appears that this discomforting reality is about to become more uncomfortable.
The lessons keep flowing from the political debacle that has been Sarah Palin's political career since she left her job as mayor of a small Alaska town. You'll recall it was Palin who launched the irresponsible phrase "death panels" into the stratosphere back in 2009.
It's not revolutionary to see long-term care come up in a feature film, from "Away from Her" to "The Savages." But it's brave to incorporate it into a comedy, especially one where the star isn't (yet) a household name.
It was quite a week for ironic juxtaposition in the nation's capital.
Civics class was in full session Monday, when long-term care providers received a summer reading assignment that should keep them busy — and anxiety-ridden — for many days to come. But, hey, at least they know the president of the United States is now paying attention.
I might not be the best advertising for it, but a new study confirms what I have suspected in my gut — nature is good for you. And that definitely includes seniors.
Illinois may soon become the fifth state that lets families install cameras in nursing homes. Advocates see the move as a way to help ensure peace of mind. But for many nursing homes, the development may do just the opposite
What persists and cannot fade, despite the best erasure efforts of days on a cross-country train, weeks of total detachment from the Internet and phone signals, AND 65 miles of arduous backpacking in mountains far from home? Good advice about fellow workers, that's what.
Everyone in long-term care loves culture change. But there's a secret.
Labor costs typically eat up 50% to 75% of a facility's operating budget. So it's small wonder that wage issues are at the heart of so many management-labor battles.
One of the more mortifying moments of attending a recent conference was when I went up to a participant and asked to interview her. She nicely reminded me that I had interviewed her 10 minutes before.
Long-term care operators are in the business of solving problems. They make problems disappear for residents, families and the government. And let's not forget employees.
Group memberships improve self-esteem, say Canadian Institute for Advanced Research fellows, who were specifically looking at school children, the homeless and the elderly. The caveat is that the groups have to contribute to the sense of who they were and their social identity.
We used to call them nursing homes. But that changed during the '80s and '90s. The term would eventually lose out to another moniker with less negative baggage: long-term care.
Don't look now, but it appears that nursing home owners might have sneaked one of their own onto the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission.
While it's hard to have firm data on visitors to nursing home residents, it's estimated that at least half never have a visitor. This can be for a variety of reasons: A relocation away from a community, estrangement or busy families, or outliving most friends and relatives.
To better appreciate this sector's alarming nurse-staffing nightmare, it's helpful to recall the warden's famous line in Cool Hand Luke: "What we've got here is failure to communicate.
There's a reason you go back to your favorite restaurant, television show or shoe store. They're good, and you can count on them being good. That's how I feel about the public relations folks at Erickson Living Communities. They "get" it, and their newest project is a perfect example.
A NADONA presentation focused on preparing documentation and audits spent time diving into the way MDS managers are treated — and it doesn't look great.
The government plans to make new claims data and other resident-care information available to providers and entrepreneurs as never before. Is it too good to be true?
Jane Youell appeared to have hit the jackpot with her timing, but now that's exactly what she still needs: a financial jackpot. The British researcher is attempting to build a first-ever love-and-dementia archive.
The big news last week wasn't that two women were charged with stealing $144,000 from a nursing home in Pennsylvania. It was that their alleged scam lasted for three years.
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Long-term care operators are rightfully concerned about the never-ending onslaught of new rules and regulations. But a deadly fire in China this week might frame things in a new way for them, if they give it a chance.
It's an odd thing to see the king of the jungle become the hunted instead of the hunter. But now that the smoke has started to clear from last week's announcement that pharmacy giant CVS will be buying Omnicare, the future is coming into better focus.
New research indicates too much time playing video games may reduce our memory skills.
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- Brain Health
If a recent survey of about 800 corporate attorneys is to be believed, there's no shortage of things to lose sleep over.
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There's a country music song that popularly declares, "You've got to stand for something or you'll fall for anything." Well, I'm here to tell you, having standards isn't the answer.
There's a feel-good national story that debuted last week around how emergency responders helped an 81-year-old man. Wonderful people came to his aid. But why did it have to come to this?
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The first time I heard Gen. Colin Powell speak at a trade show was in the mid-1990s, and he gave one of the most spellbinding presentations I'd ever witnessed. That said, it's now probably time for senior living organizations to stop hiring him.
I've learned after many years of covering long-term care that certain things are sure to arouse providers' anger — over regulation, under payment and reckless media accounts among them. What provokes fear is even easier to identify: technology.
Here's how you know a program is successful: When people keep asking you when it's coming back.
It's almost impossible to turn on the tube these days without seeing an ad from a drug company. The typical scenario goes something like this: Person with a disease or problem is all smiles, thanks to the benefits of the advertised drug. But there's a catch.
The American West was largely settled by pioneers in covered wagons. It looks like a couple hundred years later, the American healthcare landscape is going to be infiltrated by covered Pioneers. And this wagon train is only picking up momentum.
There are many benefits to communicating to your cohorts in neighboring states, and not the least of it may be knowing when a provider is kicked out of Medicaid.
Daily Editors' Notes
McKnight's Daily Editors' Notes features commentary on the latest in long-term care news and issues. Entries are written by Editorial Director John O'Connor, Editor James M. Berklan, Senior Editor Elizabeth Newman and Staff Writer Emily Mongan.
James M. Berklan
Elizabeth Leis Newman