Nursing Homes

Labor Department sues Virginia provider for allegedly withholding nurse overtime pay

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A Virginia healthcare provider did not pay long-term care nurses overtime for three years, the Department of Labor has alleged in a recently filed lawsuit.

40 states plan to increase nursing home Medicaid rates

40 states plan to increase nursing home Medicaid rates

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Reversing a trend of rate cutting during the Great Recession, most states are increasing Medicaid reimbursements for nursing homes, according to a recently released report. However, states also are accelerating efforts to reduce the number of nursing home residents, the report shows.

Omnicare off the hook in drug packaging case after Supreme Court passes

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Long-term care pharmacy Omnicare will not face False Claims Act penalties for drug packaging practices that apparently ran afoul of safety regulations. The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to take up the case, meaning that an appeals court ruling in Omnicare's favor will stand.

Nursing home infection rates have increased across the board, hepatitis has surged 50%, Columbia researchers find

Nursing home infection rates have increased across the board, hepatitis has surged 50%, Columbia researchers find

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The rate of nursing home infections increased during a recent five-year period, with especially dramatic surges in multi-drug resistant organisms and viral hepatitis, according to recently published findings from Columbia University School of Nursing and the RAND Corporation.

Lightbulbs as therapeutic tools

Lightbulbs as therapeutic tools

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Whether you're 25 or 75, you may have experienced the effects of aging on your eyesight -- and it tends to get worse as the years go by. Typical age-related eye pathologies -- including macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma and retinopathy -- contribute to reduced contrast sensitivity, slow light-dark adaptation, visual field loss and diminished visual acuity and depth perception.

DOJ the latest to pile on in therapy-billing mess

DOJ the latest to pile on in therapy-billing mess

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Don't let anyone tell you that long-term care operators don't know how to read between the lines. They might not have known to fear a McKnight's Daily Update item before it appeared Sept. 8. But it quickly and definitely earned their attention — and apprehension.

Stars aligned for shift

Stars aligned for shift

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The Five Star rating system is about to get retooled, thanks to a scathing report in The New York Times. The only real question is how extensive the changes will be.

Study gives bathing gloves thumbs-up

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Nursing homes could save money and improve resident skin care by using disposable wash gloves rather than giving traditional soap-and-water bed baths, according to recently published research.

Lawmakers demand answers about rating system quirks

Lawmakers demand answers about rating system quirks

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After The New York Times noted that providers are apparently gaming the Five Star rating system by enhancing staffing and quality data, federal lawmakers quickly put an indignant pen to paper.

Increasing staff-to-patient ratios improves nurse safety, researchers find

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A law setting mandatory nurse-to-patient staffing ratios has reduced the number of workplace injuries for registered nurses and licensed practical nurses in California, according to recently published findings.

41% of multi-drug resistant infections are acquired when nursing home residents are hospitalized, more attention needed, researchers find

41% of multi-drug resistant infections are acquired when nursing home residents are hospitalized, more attention needed, researchers find

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A significant proportion of multi-drug resistant infections in nursing homes originate in acute care hospitals, indicating that greater coordination between settings is needed, according to recently published findings.

Nursing homes should think twice before using a well-known tool for diagnosing depression, researchers say

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A familiar tool for diagnosing depression in dementia patients might not be very effective in the nursing home setting, according to findings recently published in The American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

Nursing homes tend to administer high-risk medications to returning residents, study shows

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Nursing homes may be ratcheting up high-risk medication use for certain residents who return to the facility after a stay in the hospital, according to recently published findings.

More than 50% of dementia patients in nursing homes are given potentially pointless and dangerous drugs when near death, study finds

More than 50% of dementia patients in nursing homes are given potentially pointless and dangerous drugs when near death, study finds

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Nursing homes administer largely pointless and potentially harmful drugs to a majority of residents with advanced dementia, according to findings in Jama Internal Medicine.

$3.8 million settlement shows nursing homes must oversee their therapy providers, feds say

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Two long-term care companies have agreed to a $3.75 million settlement over charges that they failed to sufficiently control an outside therapy provider's billing and care practices, the Department of Justice announced Friday.

SNFs may not be able to take on hospital patient overflow during disasters, report on Katrina and Midwest floods shows

SNFs may not be able to take on hospital patient overflow during disasters, report on Katrina and Midwest floods shows

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Disaster preparation plans should not necessarily count on skilled nursing facilities to handle additional patients that hospitals cannot accommodate, according to newly published findings.

Nursing homes face federal False Claims Act charges for allegedly overmedicating residents with antipsychotics, other drugs

Nursing homes face federal False Claims Act charges for allegedly overmedicating residents with antipsychotics, other drugs

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Two California nursing homes routinely overmedicated residents with antipsychotics and other drugs "for the convenience of management," according to federal charges announced Wednesday by the Office of Inspector General.

Federal judge dismisses nursing home 'kickback' case; upholds large X-ray company's 'swapping' method of billing

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The way mobile x-ray company Mobilex bills nursing homes is acceptable, a federal judge recently determined. Mobilex is the nation's largest provider of mobile diagnostic services. It had been facing whistleblower charges that it effectively paid kickbacks to nursing homes through an arrangement known as "swapping."

Also in the news for September 2, 2014 . . .

Inspectors cite LA nursing homes for dangerous practices but supervisors change reports to benefit facilities ... Feds join whistleblower suit charging that hospice billed for ineligible patients ... Magnetic pulses to the head could boost memory in people with Alzheimer's, Northwestern researchers say

Nursing homes may benefit from delayed RN retirements

Nursing homes may benefit from delayed RN retirements

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Nursing homes may benefit from registered nurses working longer after age 50, researchers from RAND Corporation say.

Antipsychotic use tied to acute kidney injury, increasing pressure on nursing home reduction efforts

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Older people who take antipsychotic medications are at a markedly increased risk of acute kidney injury, according to newly published research findings out of Canada. The study further supports ongoing efforts to reduce the number of nursing home residents on these drugs.

'Washing without water' is more efficient and improves outcomes versus traditional bed bathing, nursing home study finds

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Nursing homes could save money and improve resident skin care by using disposable wash gloves rather than giving traditional soap-and-water bed baths, according to results from a study in the Netherlands.

Also in the news for August 18, 2014 . . .

Communication tool helped improve nursing home antibiotic stewardship, government agency says ... Poor sleep quality increases suicide risk in older adults ... Wall Street Journal takes a look at how feds combat Medicare fraud

Also in the news for August 15, 2014 . . .

High-dose flu vaccine about 25% more effective for seniors ... Regular internet use reduces dementia risk in seniors, scientists say ... Expert panel recommends seniors receive Pfizer pneumonia vaccine ... TX lawmakers propose '3 strikes' rule to close nursing homes

More deficiencies, fewer registered nurses at nursing homes owned by private equity, researchers find

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Nursing homes under private equity ownership are cited for more deficiencies and have fewer registered nurses on staff than other for-profit facilities, according to recently published research findings.

Gardens can ease dementia

Gardens can ease dementia

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Gardens in nursing homes can help patients with dementia, new research indicates.

State News for August 2014

State News for August 2014

KANSAS — The state no longer will publicly release survey results for nursing homes going through the informal dispute resolution process, the Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) recently announced. Long-term care associations and consumer advocacy groups have protested the new system, the Kansas Health Institute News Service reported.

Increased 'bed taxes' on nursing facilities warrant stricter federal oversight, report states

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States have been increasingly taxing skilled nursing facilities and other healthcare providers to fund Medicaid in recent years, and federal authorities should look more closely at this trend, according to a government report released Tuesday.

Hospitals in the Midwest refer patients to the broadest networks of skilled nursing facilities, study finds

Hospitals in the Midwest refer patients to the broadest networks of skilled nursing facilities, study finds

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Midwestern hospitals spread referrals to the greatest variety of skilled nursing facilities and tap their favorite SNFs least often, according to a recently published analysis of nationwide referral patterns.

Also in the news for July 23, 2014 . . .

Joint Commission releases free nursing home resource on preventing infection ... ACA in the balance again as two courts issue contrary rulings on subsidies ... Obama's executive order on LGBT workplace rights extends to some nursing homes

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