Long-term care beneficiaries may be at risk under proposed reimbursement rates for clinical laboratory tests, the National Association for the Support of Long Term Care said on Tuesday.
It is commonly accepted that over 70% of all medical decisions are based on laboratory results and now more than ever those results are used to make rehospitalization decisions. To provide a closer look at some of the challenges faced by long term care service providers, let's explore the role of a key partner in patient care—the phlebotomist.
Long-term care nurses are like traffic cops, managing data coming at them from multiple sources. Buried in the midst of vital signs, weights, meal percentages and overly detailed reports concerning bowel movements can also be found laboratory results.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has indicated that it might rescind a rule that requires physician signatures on requisitions for all clinical laboratory tests paid for by Medicare, as part of the 2011 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. Long-term care providers had worried this rule would delay important lab tests for residents since physician visits to skilled nursing facilities can be infrequent.