April 2012 Issue of McKnight's Long Term Care News

April 2012 Issue of McKnight's Long Term Care News


New awards for tech innovators

As never before, operators are harnessing tech tools that improve care delivery.

$3 billion flowing to divert SNF residents

The federal government has turned on the spigot with $3 billion in grant money to help states keep individuals out of long-term care facilities.

GAO: Watch SNFs closer

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services needs to improve the tools it uses to evaluate the quality of nursing home care, a federal report ...

AHCA unveils quality goals with timelines

The American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living are zeroing in on rehospitalizations and reducing staff turnover as part of the ...

Cure for Alzheimer's by 2025?

A newly announced federal initiative calls for effective Alzheimer's treatments by 2025.

Study: Better sleep with age

A person's quality of sleep should improve as he or she grows older, new study results suggest.

C. diff rates reach new high

Clostridium difficile infections have reached record high rates, a new report finds.

12 states voice support for ACA's Medicaid expansion

A group of attorneys general and a governor filed an amicus brief in February with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Affordable Care ...

Omnicare ends hostile PharMerica chase

The nation's two largest institutional pharmacy services providers will not be joining forces. Omnicare abandoned its takeover attempt of PharMerica in late February.

State News

Vote on enhanced nurse education requirements

Illinois lawmakers delayed a vote on a bill requiring that at least 20% of all nursing and personal care in a nursing home be provided ...


Genius for strokes

At least one stream of long-term care residents hasn't abated; providers are finding blended therapies are boosting stroke rehab success.

Bridging the gaps

Information technology initiatives bolster long-term care providers' ability to trace and evaluate the quality of care they deliver to their residents.

60 Seconds with...

60 Seconds with...Cheryl Phillips, M.D.

What's behind the push, frankly, is CMS and Congress. But we're not just being reactive. Many providers have been working hard at the local level ...

Ask the care expert

Ask the care expert: What are pertinent details to include in pain journals?

Pain journals are a great way for anyone who may be experiencing pain to track it and take a record to the healthcare practitioner's office ...

Resident care

Post-stroke malnutrition may linger on for months: experts

Individuals who have had a stroke might continue to have difficulty eating three months or longer after the event, despite regaining the strength for most ...

Ask the treatment expert

Ask the treatment expert: When are clean and sterile dressing techniques indicated?

This question is often asked. Wound care specialists debate among themselves as to when to use sterile technique and when to use clean technique.

Wound care

FDA approval may mean big things for this small device

Now that the Food & Drug Administration has approved Smith & Nephew's PICO device for the treatment of wounds, the firm is hoping the pocket-sized ...

Combined peptides shown to help wounds

Researchers have successfully combined bioactive peptides in an effort to stimulate wound healing. Investigators tested a newly-created peptide on patients with uncontrolled diabetes.

Ask the nursing expert

Ask the nursing expert: How can I keep key nursing staff in the face of cutbacks?

In this era of ever-increasing clinical needs and critical thinking with our medically complex patients, continuing education is desperately needed.


Researchers highlight nurse roles in end-of-life caregiving

A survey conducted by the California Healthcare Foundation found that nearly 80% of the end-of-life patients they surveyed would appreciate speaking with a physician about ...

Study: Recession improved staff turnover

Newly licensed registered nurses perceived fewer jobs available during the recession. They also reported greater loyalty to their employers, results of a new study reveal.

Ask the payment expert

Ask the payment expert: How will the RAC audit process affect nursing homes?

They already are. We were recently involved in a RAC audit appeal process. Nursing facilities should be prepared to know what a RAC review can ...

Payment & policy

Supreme Court's Medicaid decision heartens providers

A "punt" by the U.S. Supreme Court left long-term care providers breathing a deep, maybe temporary, sigh of relief regarding California's proposed Medicaid funding cuts.

MDS 3.0 updates strike

At least providers can't say they weren't warned about major changes to the new MDS 3.0 and other resident assessment tools that started this month.

Ask the legal expert

Ask the legal expert: What are the rules on the mandatory reporting of government overpayments?

Providers' response to suspected overpayments could prevent damages and penalties under the False Claims Act, and civil monetary penalties and exclusion from participation in the ...

Legal Matters

Therapy lawsuit advances in federal court; debate persists

A former Aegis occupational therapy assistant can move forward with a lawsuit over what she says were fraudulent therapy claims.

AL court rules in favor of health insurer

Alabama's high court has ordered a nursing home's breach of contract suit against the state's largest health insurer to be dismissed.

Pursuing excellence

Analytically Speaking: Analytics and PL loss

New York Times reporter Paula Span penned an article last April based upon a research initiative headed by David G. Stevenson, Ph.D., a health policy ...

Smart Money: Update on insurance

Natural disasters earmarked 2011 as the second worst year in history for insured property losses and the worst year for economic loss.

Having my say

Care like the tire man

It wasn't the worst start I've ever had, but it wasn't good. My wife woke up sick and my dog woke up whining, or maybe ...


Design Decisions: A household into a home

Unexpected twists took Maryland CCRC leaders in a direction they didn't plan on — and it has paid off in increased resident satisfaction.

How to do it…

How to do it... Transportation

Transportation for anyone in a rural or sub-rural setting — especially long-term care providers — can be challenging. More planning and top-notch strategic investments are ...

A day in the life

A Day in the Life: When art becomes magic in action

Watching a long-time Alzheimer's sufferer create a beautiful piece of artwork or even play a musical instrument is like watching "magic in action," says Carol ...

I couldn't live without...

I couldn't live without... Interactant

Prior to adopting Health Care Software's Interactant solution, Jennifer D'Angelo, the assistant vice president of information services at Christian Health Care Center in Wyckoff, NJ, ...


New readmissions initiative to rely heavily on technology

Applied technology is likely to play a role in a new federal initiative designed to reduce hospital readmissions.

Resident care

Study: Hearing loss could induce falls

Skilled nursing facility operators eager to reduce resident falls might have a new tool in their kit: testing residents' hearing.

Company news

Kindred cuts its losses and focuses on 'cluster' strategy

As it recovers from a tough fourth quarter, Kindred Healthcare said it would not renew seven lease bundles containing 64 facilities in 2013.

G & E files for bankruptcy

BGC Partners will buy the assets of Grubb & Ellis Co., which filed for bankruptcy in February.

Vendor news

New platform likely to help long-term care marketers

Salesforce.com recently launched Site.com. The new platform will give marketers in the long-term care field an easy way to update their websites, said Andrew Leigh, ...

Prudential wants only group LTC policies

Prudential Group Insurance will discontinue the sale of individual long-term care products. Instead, the firm plans to focus exclusively on group long-term care insurance policies.

The big picture

Rewarding tech efforts

Senior living operators are harnessing innovative tech tools to improve care delivery. To celebrate their exceptional feats, McKnight's and American HealthTech have established the first ...

Editor’s desk

Antipsychotics tension enhances the attention

If you feel like you've been bombarded with antipsychotic news lately, it's not in your imagination. People inside and outside of long-term care alike have ...


Ready for the next stage

While some government officials might dream of their retirement days to be filled with globe-trotting, for Sheila Lambowitz, travel couldn't wait.