Long-term care commission's work unlikely to fuel changes

Share this article:
LeadingAge's Larry Minnix
LeadingAge's Larry Minnix

The fiscal cliff avoidance deal seems to prove an adage about politics being the art of compromise. But as tradeoffs go, long-term care providers didn't fare too badly.

An automatic 2% Medicare payment cut was avoided, as were physician payment reductions. Wins also were racked up in areas such as therapy caps and bed taxes.

In fact, the only real defeat for the industry was that the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Act was officially terminated.

Even here, the defeat was not total: In return, a national long-term care commission will be set up.

Its 15 members will look for ways to improve service delivery and payments. But chances of the panel acting as a catalyst for change are slim: The group is being hastily put together and must report recommendations within six months. Moreover, Congress is under no obligation to respond to its findings. 

According to most analysts, the commission is likely to develop a comprehensive report that will do little more than gather dust. 

In fact, the real fight in the short term is likely to be over raising the nation's debt limit. In an all-too-familiar development, President Obama and GOP leaders in Congress have dug in on opposing sides of the issue once again. 

Share this article:

More in News

Double homicide at Houston nursing home; victims' roommate arrested

Double homicide at Houston nursing home; victims' roommate ...

A double murder occurred late Tuesday night in a Houston nursing home room shared by four men, according to local authorities. Police arrested Guillermo Correa on suspicion of beating two ...

$2 million HIPAA settlement highlights mobile device risks facing healthcare providers

Laptops and other mobile devices containing personal health information have been stolen from long-term care ombudsman programs and other healthcare organizations, including from Concentra Health Services and QCA Health Plan Inc. Now, Concentra and QCA have agreed to legal settlements totaling nearly $2 million, federal ...

Long-term care nurses often 'scramble' to get family members' blessing for palliative ...

Nursing home residents might not transition to full palliative care until they are very near death, at which point nurses and family members act in a state of crisis, suggests recently published research out of Canada.