Market basket increase for 2011 'more than adequate,' MedPAC says

Share this article:
Salaries increase for DONs, administrators
Salaries increase for DONs, administrators

The proposed fiscal year 2011 market basket update of 1.7% for skilled nursing facilities is "more than adequate," the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) said in a letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

MedPAC, which has routinely called for no market basket update at all, commented on other payment issues in the letter. It said CMS should establish a separate payment component to handle certain cases involving non-therapy ancillary services. Payments for these services (such as drugs, respiratory care or lab studies) are tied to nursing time, even though their costs vary more than nursing costs, MedPAC said. As an example, if two patients receive the same amount of nursing care, but one is taking an expensive drug, a nursing home will be reimbursed at the same rate for each patient.

MedPAC also said payments for individual, concurrent and group therapy services should reflect the cost of those services. This will prevent providers from furnishing one type of therapy based on a higher reimbursement rate, according to MedPAC. Greater consideration of group therapy services in the new case-mix system could help correct this concern, MedPAC said. The new case-mix system does not change the fee-for-service nature of the nursing home prospective payment system, potentially giving providers a financial incentive to furnish those services, MedPAC wrote. The letter was issued as a comment on a CMS proposed rule concerning skilled nursing payments.

Share this article:

More in News

Breier named new CEO at Kindred

Breier named new CEO at Kindred

Kindred Healthcare announced Thursday that it has chosen a new top executive to lead its push toward creating a mammoth national brand. Benjamin A. Breier, the company's current president and ...

Proposed managed care rule could accelerate shift away from nursing home care, official suggests

Proposed managed care rule could accelerate shift away ...

Proposed regulations slated for early 2015 likely will affect how Medicaid managed care balances home- versus facility-based long-term care, news sources reported Wednesday.

Assisted living residents say 'homelike' setting not so important

Contrary to conventional wisdom, assisted living residents might not place a high value on how "homelike" their surroundings are, suggest findings out of St. Catherine University in St. Paul, MN.