News

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.

Providers challenge Verma on citations

Providers challenge Verma on citations

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LeadingAge executives met with new Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma in April, prioritizing regulatory concerns.

Unified pay by 2021: MedPAC

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The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission voted in April to recommend an accelerated timeline that would see implementation of a site-neutral post-acute care payment system kick off in 2021.

Submit entries to tech awards

Submit entries to tech awards

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The 2017 McKnight's Excellence in Technology Awards are now accepting submissions from long-term and senior care providers.

Dementia drug use questioned

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Canadian researchers urged reconsideration of how drugs are administered to nursing home residents with dementia shortly before death.

Readmission risk increased

Readmission risk increased

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Heart failure patients who went to a nursing home were 50% more likely to be readmitted to the hospital than patients who returned home instead, according to a study in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Don't wait to train for emergencies: CMS

Don't wait to train for emergencies: CMS

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Operators should begin conducting emergency training exercises as soon as possible in order to meet the Nov. 15 implementation date of the recent emergency preparedness final rule.

Antibiotic programs on clock

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Providers must have their new antibiotic stewardship programs in place by Nov. 28, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is emphasizing.

With Medicaid 'broken,' the fight will go to fraud, waste

With Medicaid 'broken,' the fight will go to fraud, waste

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Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, M.D., called the Medicaid program "broken" and said it needed a stronger focus on fighting fraud and waste during a House subcommittee hearing in late March.

LTC relieved, cautious after bill's demise

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Providers breathed a sigh of relief in late March after a GOP House healthcare bill was taken off the table.

Providers told: take high road

Providers told: take high road

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The leader of the second-largest nursing home association in America called on members in March to act passionately but politely when lobbying members of Congress.

Providers rip GOP plans for Medicaid

Providers rip GOP plans for Medicaid

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Long-term care leaders and other healthcare providers tore into a proposal from Republican House leaders that would cut funding from programs serving the elderly.

SNF Compare launch in 2018

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A new website that will allow consumers to view quality ratings for skilled nursing facilities is slated for release in October 2018, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services officials said in late February.

SNF occupancy at all-time low

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Skilled nursing occupancy rates hit their lowest level on record in the fourth quarter of 2016, according to the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care.

Reconciliation helps: study

Reconciliation helps: study

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A medication reconciliation program may help reduce hospital emergency room readmissions by as much as 6%, a recent study shows.

New CMS chief stirs provider anticipation

New CMS chief stirs provider anticipation

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Long-term care provider groups were complimentary of Seema Verma following her mid-March confirmation as administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Trump budget cuts HHS 18%

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President Trump's first proposed budget chops 18% from Department of Health and Human Services funding and adds millions of dollars to combat healthcare fraud for fiscal 2018.

Obamacare replacement bill faces tougher test in Senate

Obamacare replacement bill faces tougher test in Senate

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While House Republican leaders were trying to tie up loose ends to get their proposal for repealing and replacing Obamacare across the finish line, Senators on both sides of the aisle were predicting a tougher time getting a similar bill to pass in their chamber.

Multi-facility CEO salaries on the rise

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Chief executive officers for multi-facility long-term care systems saw their salaries increase to an average of $465,875 in 2016, according to a new compensation survey.

11th Online Expo rolls out the red carpet

11th Online Expo rolls out the red carpet

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Long-term care's virtual trade show continues its record-setting run with another round of top-rate educational sessions, up to 5 free CE credits, vendor booths and a whole lot more

Verma: Fraud a hefty priority

Verma: Fraud a hefty priority

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Seema Verma, President Donald Trump's nominee to lead the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, said during her Feb. 16 confirmation hearing that tackling healthcare fraud would be a "top priority" should she get the job.

Trump aide: Medicaid grants will cut fraud

Trump aide: Medicaid grants will cut fraud

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In a possible sign of what providers might be able to expect regarding Medicaid funding changes, White House senior adviser Kellyanne Conway said in late January that moving to block grants would "really cut out the fraud, waste and abuse," and that beneficiaries would "get the help directly."

High Court to hear SNF case

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The U.S. Supreme Court was scheduled to hear arguments in late February in a nursing home arbitration lawsuit that could alter the industry's future, close observers said.

Brain meds use soars in seniors

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More seniors are taking three or more medicines that affect the brain, according to new research.

CHF protocol shows promise

CHF protocol shows promise

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A new treatment regimen for congestive heart failure patients in skilled nursing facilities reduced hospital admissions from 31% to 7% over seven months.

Final rule deadlines branded 'unrealistic'

Final rule deadlines branded 'unrealistic'

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Long-term care providers are "gravely concerned" over the recent publication of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' final rule for nursing homes, LeadingAge said in late January.

Judge finalizes HHS Jimmo fix

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A U.S. District Court judge accepted the Department of Health and Human Services' plan to better explain grounds of the historic Jimmo settlement — with a few added tweaks of her own.

ACA repeal, Medicaid block grants face hot discussion

ACA repeal, Medicaid block grants face hot discussion

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Congressional Republicans met in mid-February to try to discern new details of replacement provisions for the Affordable Care Act, but various questions including about the future of Medicaid, remained unanswered at press time.

Immigration order 'chilling,' groups say

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President Donald Trump's executive order in January aimed at curtailing immigration raised red flags for at least two medical associations specializing in eldercare.

Survey advice at Online Expo

Survey advice at Online Expo

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Providers can make good use of some new strategies and tips to be prepared for surveyors around the clock, says Paula Sanders, principal and co-chairwoman of the Health Care Practice Group at law firm Post & Schell P.C.

Groups urge Trump to save some of ACA

Groups urge Trump to save some of ACA

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LeadingAge, along with 71 other nonprofit aging organizations, sent a letter in mid-January urging then-President-elect Donald Trump to preserve some nursing-home related provisions of the Affordable Care Act.

CMS fights for arbitration ban

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Federal officials struck back at providers in January, filing notice that they were challenging efforts to stop a ban of pre-dispute nursing home arbitration agreements.

Delirium often undiagnosed

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Delirium among skilled nursing residents needs to be treated more seriously than it currently is by providers, according to authors of a recent research review.

Directives not in good order

Directives not in good order

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Many nursing home providers are missing chances to cut costs and reduce unnecessary care by not having residents' advance directives on file, or orderly, a recent study found.

CMS reveals cardio, ortho bundle models

CMS reveals cardio, ortho bundle models

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New bundled payment models focused on cardiac care and orthopedics were finalized by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services at the end of December.

Occupancy rates at epic lows

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The occupancy picture did not improve for skilled nursing or assisted living facilities in the fourth quarter of 2016.

Value-based purchasing will likely continue, expert says

Value-based purchasing will likely continue, expert says

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Value-based purchasing initiatives and a focus on post-acute partnerships are likely to persist in 2017, despite the possibility of "repeal and replace" of the Affordable Care Act, according to Avalere Health experts in a January webinar.

HHS issues rule that speeds up appeals

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A Department of Health and Human Services final rule may allow providers to move more quickly through the backlog of 700,000-plus Medicare-related appeals.

Lengthy hiring haunting applicant ranks

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The healthcare industry is projected to need 1 million new nurses within five years, but most settings are finding the wait between placing a help wanted ad and a hiring decision to be far too long.

MedPAC calls for pay freeze

MedPAC calls for pay freeze

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The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission in December called for the elimination of market basket updates for skilled nursing operators in fiscal 2018 and 2019.

Providers say Price is right to lead HHS

Providers say Price is right to lead HHS

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Long-term care providers delivered ringing endorsements of President-elect Donald Trump's choice to lead the Department of Health and Human Services.