News

Hatch targets dubious care

Hatch targets dubious care

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) has demanded information on nursing home abuse and neglect from the Department of Health and Human Services.

DACA's fate worries healthcare industry

DACA's fate worries healthcare industry

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A potential hemorrhage of workers from the healthcare sector could be held off if a pathway to citizenship for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals arises out of a deal between President Donald Trump and Congressional leaders.

Critics: Gaps in 'Compare' site

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The federal website that informs consumers about specific nursing homes has "considerable" knowledge gaps, a pair of prominent Harvard University researchers asserted recently.

Tool predicts fracture risk

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A new tool has shown promise in predicting fracture risk among long-term care residents.

MDROs tied to infection rates

MDROs tied to infection rates

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New research indicates almost half of nursing home residents had more than one multidrug-resistant organism (MDRO) in or on them.

Groups call for delay of 'costly' mega-rule

Groups call for delay of 'costly' mega-rule

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The next phases of the new requirements of participation should be delayed to relieve burden on providers, LeadingAge told lawmakers in late August.

SNF need greater than thought

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Americans have a higher probability of needing skilled nursing care than previously thought, according to new research.

Former executives sued by ASC for 'looting' company

Former executives sued by ASC for 'looting' company

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First, federal officials sought and received indictments of former top officers of American Senior Communities. Now, it's the company's turn to go after them.

SNF: Rogue volunteers took residents

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A nursing home was fighting allegations it didn't have an evacuation plan in place during Hurricane Harvey.

Fifth Fall Expo to offer free CE

Fifth Fall Expo to offer free CE

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As providers prepare for Phase 2 requirements under the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' mega-rule, many are balancing how to stay compliant while affirming residents' rights.Attorney Sean Fahey, of Hall, Render, Killian, Heath & Lyman P.C., will give guidance on this and more during the Quality session of the McKnight's Fall Online Expo.

CMS cancels, trims bundled pay models

CMS cancels, trims bundled pay models

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued a proposal in mid-August to cancel its Episode Payment and Cardiac Rehabilitation bundled payment models, citing a need for "greater flexibility" in designing new models.

Admins, DONs earning more

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Salaries for nursing home administrators jumped 3% over the past year, to a national average of $97,401, while directors of nursing realized a 2.6% increase, to an average of $89,902.

Flu shot firings leading to trial

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A North Carolina hospital will have to go to trial over claims that it fired at least three employees who refused a flu shot on religious grounds.

Low vitamin D ups heart risk

Low vitamin D ups heart risk

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Seniors with vitamin D deficiency may face more than 12 times an increased risk of heart failure, according to a study published in August.

Academic serving up 'train wreck' forecast

Academic serving up 'train wreck' forecast

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Low wages and a lack of respect for direct care workers are putting the long-term care industry on a dangerous path to worker shortages, a professor warned recently.

Thanks for 1% Medicare raise

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If they hadn't known well in advance it would be that small, providers probably wouldn't have been so gracious about a mere 1% increase in Medicare reimbursements from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

CMS surprises — and doesn't — with pay model changes

CMS surprises — and doesn't — with pay model changes

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There were surprises mixed with an utter lack of the unexpected in August when federal officials made bold moves away from certain mandatory care and payment models.

Hospitals failing at discharge info: report

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Hospital patients often don't receive quality information on skilled nursing facilities prior to their discharge and may choose a facility based on location, a new study shows.

Reader poll: What non-textbook advice do you have for a new administrator?

When I teach my students, the first thing I tell them is there's a tremendous difference between academia and what you experience as an administrator on the job. Number one is dealing with people, meaning the residents, their families and staff. From a leadership perspective, you need to learn to be good listeners. That is a skill that is not taught, but great leaders are great listeners. Number two is factors they have no control over. They have to learn to be adaptable and flexible." — David Wolf, CNHA, CALA, CAS, FACHCA, Ph.D., Professor, Barry University, Delray Beach, FL

A 'super' approach to care

A 'super' approach to care

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Recent regulatory and reimbursement changes led Symphony Post Acute Care Network to develop a "Super SNF" care model.

Medicaid pay threat dodged

Medicaid pay threat dodged

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Providers averted potentially billions of dollars in Medicaid funding losses in July after a Senate GOP healthcare reform bill was pulled from consideration.

Providers see survey gift in penalty delay

Providers see survey gift in penalty delay

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Penalties for the next phase of nursing home survey guidelines will be postponed a year, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced June 30.

Citations, staff levels decline

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The average number of nursing home deficiencies has dropped, but staffing levels are lower than expert recommendations, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation report.

Workers save 2 during SNF fire

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Two nursing home employees were credited in July with running into "heavy smoke conditions" to rescue two residents.

Brian Jurutka previously served as NIC's president for two years.

Brian Jurutka previously served as NIC's president for two years.

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Brian Jurutka has succeeded Robert Kramer as president and CEO of the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care.

DOL drops defense of Obama overtime rule

DOL drops defense of Obama overtime rule

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The Department of Labor's fight to enact an overtime rule that has caused anxiety for providers won't be continued by the new administration, according to court documents filed in June.

McKnight's blogs named best

McKnight's editors were honored recently with an APEX Grand Award for their "Daily Editors' Notes" blog, which appears at www.mcknights.com.

Providers laud CMS decision to delay survey fines one year

Providers laud CMS decision to delay survey fines one year

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Nursing home groups say they are grateful that regulators heard their concerns about new changes to survey requirements and softened the blow.

Provider's social media penalty halved

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Although long-term care officials agree photos and videos of residents should not be taken or posted to social media without consent, some operators are pushing back.

Transitions and quality command center stage as experts examine post-acute care's future

Transitions and quality command center stage as experts examine post-acute care's future

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Few will dispute the value of ensuring patients are optimally treated and attended to as they move across care settings.

Arbitration win suits providers

Arbitration win suits providers

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The Trump administration announced that it was abandoning an Obama-era rule that would outlaw pre-dispute arbitration agreements, initiating a celebration by long-term care providers.

CMS gives guidance on emergency prep

CMS gives guidance on emergency prep

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services published guidance in June in advance of its final emergency preparedness rule for providers.

SNF occupancy to bottom out?

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If current trends continue, occupancy rates in skilled nursing facilities could be headed to new lows this year, said analysts from the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care.

Legionnaires' traced to LTC

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Long-term care facilities were the largest single source of Legionnaires' disease cases in healthcare facilities in 2015, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

McKnight's honored again

McKnight's honored again

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McKnight's Long-Term Care News won four national awards at the 2017 American Society of Business Publication Editors competition.

Expert rips need for CON laws

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Ending nursing home certificate-of-need laws could spur innovation within the sector, one expert argued in a published journal piece in June.

Vendor to pay $155M in first-of-kind case

Vendor to pay $155M in first-of-kind case

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An electronic health records vendor accused of paying kickbacks and selling its software even though it wasn't certified will pay $155 million to settle legal claims.

GOP health bill gets tougher on Medicaid

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It was unclear at press time whether Senate Republicans could reach 50 votes needed for passage of a controversial healthcare bill that would involve deep long-term cuts to Medicaid.

Trump budget wields more Medicaid cuts than expected

Trump budget wields more Medicaid cuts than expected

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Providers who first thought they would be on uncommonly good footing with Republicans controlling both chambers of Congress and the White House were stunned earlier this year when Medicaid reform was put on the table.

Reader Poll: How do you create time for yourself?

"Instead of taking one big vacation each year, I enjoy getting away for several long weekends — whether it's to a local destination or somewhere more exotic, like Puerto Rico. I also make it a priority in my day-to-day life to take time for myself since I know how important it is for caregivers to take care of themselves as well. For me, that may mean going to the spa, playing sports or even just trying a new restaurant." — Debbie Harry-Miller, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Heritage Senior Living, West Allis, WI

Suit filed over false background checks

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An Indiana-based healthcare management group has been hit with a class-action lawsuit after one job applicant claimed she was denied a position at the company based on an allegedly false background check report.

Therapy docs lacking: expert

Therapy docs lacking: expert

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Untimely certifications, missed or incorrectly billed Change of Therapy documentation, and lack of documentation supporting a signed physician order for skilled therapy are among the top reasons facilities are battling Medicare claims denials, an expert said in late April.

Arbitration rules get two major victories

Arbitration rules get two major victories

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The use of arbitration agreements in nursing homes may be bouncing back after it was banned in last year's final rule for long-term care providers.

Paltry pay raise not unexpected

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Nursing home operators will receive a $390 million Medicare pay increase in fiscal 2018, the Centers for the Medicare & Medicaid Services announced in a rule proposed in late April.

Hospital visits drop by 25%

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Potentially avoidable hospitalizations among Medicare beneficiaries have dropped 25% since 2013, according to the "America's Health Ranking Senior Report" from the United Health Foundation.

$2.4 million to settle breach

$2.4 million to settle breach

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A Texas health system agreed to pay $2.4 million in May to settle potential HIPAA violations stemming from an incident where it named a patient in a press release.

Senators search for Medicaid agreement

Senators search for Medicaid agreement

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Senators sought middle ground in May over an Obamacare replacement bill and its ability to expand and fund Medicaid.

Class-action OK'd for lawsuit

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The Arkansas Supreme Court has agreed with a circuit court that a wrongful death complaint claiming understaffing by a nursing home may proceed as a class-action lawsuit.

SCOTUS grants provider win in arbitration clause dispute

SCOTUS grants provider win in arbitration clause dispute

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The U.S. Supreme Court in May sided with a Kentucky nursing home in a case involving power of attorney and arbitration that could have wider implications for the profession.

McKnight's wins ASHPE, Hermes awards

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McKnight's Long-Term Care News was recently honored with several sets of national awards.