Oregon senators float pay-for-performance bill in Senate

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Another bill tying nursing home performance to Medicare payments is on the legislative table.

The senators from Oregon – one a Democrat, the other a Republican -- introduced a bill in the Senate last week that would provide incentives to skilled nursing facilities to improve quality of care. The incentives would link Medicare payments to quality reporting and performance requirements.

The Long Term Care Quality and Consumer Information Improvement Act of 2005 would also amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to provide Medicare beneficiaries with access to information concerning the quality of care provided by skilled nursing facilities. Ron Wyden (D) and Gordon Smith (R) introduced the act.

Last month, Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) introduced similar pay-for-performance legislation in the House Representatives. The Long-Term Care Quality Improvement Act would require separate reporting of expenditures to direct-care staff. It also would mandate that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services develop tested methods for linking payment to quality.