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A site-neutral  PAC plan nears

A site-neutral PAC plan nears

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The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission has said it's close to completing a plan for unified, site-neutral post-acute payments.

Social media posts spur Senate interest

Social media posts spur Senate interest

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A surge of cases involving long-term care workers inappropriately posting video or photos of naked residents has led some U.S. senators to push for greater scrutiny.

New measures of quality here

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Six new quality measures for skilled nursing facilities will be rolled out by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services beginning in April.

Dementia tied to gum disease

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Gum disease has been linked to a greater rate in cognitive decline, a study following people with early-stage Alzheimer's disease has found.

Flu shots spike when required

Flu shots spike when required

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Mandatory flu vaccinations for healthcare workers increase the overall vaccination rate, per new research from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

High therapy billings trigger audits: CMS

High therapy billings trigger audits: CMS

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Federal regulators say startling data about the amount of therapy given at the highest levels compelled them to call in recovery audit contractors.

CMS beats value-based pay goal

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services reached its goal of having 30% of all Medicare payments tied to alternative payment models nearly a year ahead of schedule, the agency announced in March.

Facility hit with lawsuit after nude resident photos appear

Facility hit with lawsuit after nude resident photos appear

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The other shoe dropped when a lawsuit against a South Dakota nursing home was filed after an employee posted nude photos of a resident on social media.

Study: 27% of readmissions preventable

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Improved discharge directions and communication between patients and providers could prevent more than a fourth of hospital readmissions, according to a new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

'Value' outlays on pace: CMS

'Value' outlays on pace: CMS

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Healthcare providers should reach the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' goal of having 30% of all Medicare payments be value-based by the end of this year, one CMS official declared in early February.

Providers 'concerned' over post-acute plans

Providers 'concerned' over post-acute plans

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Worried provider groups have called for a slowdown in the development of Medicare cost measures for post-acute care.

States spotty on checkups

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An initiative that provides states with grants to implement background check programs is off to a slow-moving start, according to a recent report.

No 'benzo' link with dementia

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Seniors who take medications from a class of anti-anxiety drugs do not have an increased risk of dementia, research from the University of Washington has found.

Group's care policies may hurt, AHCA says

Group's care policies may hurt, AHCA says

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Chronic care proposals may have "unintended consequences," provider groups said in February.

New guidelines target diabetes

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For the first time ever, the American Diabetes Association has released guidelines on diabetes management in long-term care settings.

MedPAC remains bullish on site-neutral payment system

MedPAC remains bullish on site-neutral payment system

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Medicare Payment Advisory Commission members remained staunch supporters of a site-neutral payment system for post-acute care providers.

Camera snags abusive nursing home aide

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As cameras grow more prevalent in long-term care, one certified nursing assistant is headed behind bars.

10th Online Expo offers hot topics for 2016

10th Online Expo offers hot topics for 2016

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The annual McKnight's virtual trade show features another cast of national experts, free CE credits, vendor booths and more — and it's available wherever you and your computer are

Expo returns bigger, better

Expo returns bigger, better

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Reducing unnecessary hospital readmissions will become increasingly important for long-term care providers in the year ahead, warns Elaine Healy, M.D., medical director and vice president of medical affairs at New York's United Hebrew of New Rochelle.

Year's top concerns: quality, arbitration

Year's top concerns: quality, arbitration

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Seven months after being surprised by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' release of a "mega rule," the nation's largest nursing home association said 2016 could be quiet on the policy front.

Slight drop for SNF occupancy

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The occupancy rate for skilled nursing facilities fell 0.1% during the fourth quarter of 2015, according to data released in January by the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care.

Fall risk tied to vitamin overuse

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Despite previous studies highlighting the benefits of Vitamin D, too much could increase the risk of falls in seniors, per new research in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Opioids may darken mood

Opioids may darken mood

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Long-term use of opioids may trigger depression, a new study finds.

Speech mostly omits health-related issues

Speech mostly omits health-related issues

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Providers looking for President Barack Obama to tackle long-term care and other health-related issues in his final State of the Union address were left disappointed.

False claims to fuel lawsuits?

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Providers could be in store for a new, bigger wave of False Claims Act lawsuits, warn authors of a new report.

Efforts to restrict arbitration a growing industry concern

Efforts to restrict arbitration a growing industry concern

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' proposal to limit the use of pre-dispute arbitration agreements in skilled nursing facilities created the most angst for providers in 2015, according to the American Health Care Association's head of government affairs.

CMS discharge proposal draws criticism

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Despite showing general support, providers believe a recent discharge planning proposal from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services needs additional clarification to it to ensure smooth patient transitions to post-acute care.

ACHCA names newest leader

ACHCA names newest leader

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Cecilia Sepp is the new president and CEO of the American College of Health Care Administrators. She was slated to start Jan. 4.

GAO calls for better SNF data, oversight

GAO calls for better SNF data, oversight

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The agency that oversees data collection and regulation of U.S. nursing homes needs to do much better, General Accountability Office investigators say.

MedPAC wants payment freeze

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The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission provoked the ire of skilled nursing providers after recommending once again that Congress freeze operator market-basket updates, this time for fiscal years 2017 and 2018.

Dementia test accuracy hailed

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A new computerized test is more than 82% accurate in diagnosing Alzheimer's disease, researchers have found.

Tylenol might not ease flu

Tylenol might not ease flu

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Using acetaminophen to treat the flu might not help improve symptoms, a new study shows.

Bundled pay model gets all wrapped up

Bundled pay model gets all wrapped up

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has released its final bundled payment model for hip and knee replacement surgeries, which includes plans to waive the three-day stay rule for beneficiaries entering "qualified" skilled nursing facilities.

Bill to speed Medicare appeals

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Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and ranking member Ron Wyden (D-OR) formally introduced to the full Senate a bill that would provide more resources and funding to ease a glutted Medicare claims appeal process.

Report shows improvement, but agency has some doubts

Report shows improvement, but agency has some doubts

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Nursing home operators received good marks in a recent General Accountability Office report, if they're to be believed. The numbers, that is.

Forecast: Liability costs to top $215,000

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Long-term care facilities can expect their annual loss rate to increase by 5% over the course of 2016, according to a new report from the American Health Care Association and Aon Global Risk Consulting.

Active video games aid diabetes patients

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Older adults with type 2 diabetes might be able to meet activity guidelines using the Wii Fit Plus system, according to a Swiss study published in the fall.

Providers cite HIPAA wrongly

Providers cite HIPAA wrongly

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Care coordination is often stymied by incorrect understanding of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), a former Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services official noted at LeadingAge's annual convention.

LeadingAge salutes Minnix, new leaders

LeadingAge salutes Minnix, new leaders

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A record number of LeadingAge attendees and eight past board chairmen honored outgoing President and CEO Larry Minnix in a polished "thank you" ceremony at the group's annual meeting and expo in November in Boston.

Penalties surge under new law

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The new federal budget could prove costly for accused providers.

Vaccine power hurt by statins

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Statins may reduce the efficacy of flu vaccinations in seniors, according to two new studies.

SNFs worst for job-tied injuries

SNFs worst for job-tied injuries

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Nursing facilities again rank among the industries with the highest amount of occupational injuries, according to the latest information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

AANAC making plans for DON organization

AANAC making plans for DON organization

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Long-term care nurse executives have announced they will be introducing an organization for directors of nursing in a few months.

'CCRC' is out, LeadingAge says

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After two years of study, LeadingAge has said continuing care retirement communities should be retitled "life plan community" as a category.

Sloan, former LeadingAge COO, named to top position

Sloan, former LeadingAge COO, named to top position

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The former chief operating officer of LeadingAge, Katie Smith Sloan, has been named its new president and CEO — the first woman to hold the top posts at the association.

Updated LTC safety rules are on the way

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Two new rules that would update fire safety and emergency preparedness standards for healthcare facilities arrived at the White House's Office of Management and Budget for review in November.

Audit program lacking: GAO

Audit program lacking: GAO

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The government's Recovery Audit Contractor program needs to be improved, asserts a new report from the Government Accountability Office.

Democrats seek end to arbitration options

Democrats seek end to arbitration options

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A group of U.S. Senators is urging an outright ban of nursing home arbitration agreement clauses in pre-admission documents.

OIG calls for crackdown

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The government has renewed criticism of provider billing methods for therapy and says it will be re-evaluating the entire process.

Many choose to bypass flu shots

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Long-term care workers have the lowest rate of influenza vaccine coverage, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found.

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