The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission's latest report to Congress was submitted Friday with previously known recommendations for payment levels. But largely lost among the 400-page report also was a body of research indicating that long-term care providers are showing progress in quality improvement activities, said a prominent quality researcher.
Nursing homes have made strides toward reducing antipsychotic medication use among residents with dementia, according to new figures from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living.
Skilled nursing providers fell short of reaching a 15% reduction in off-label antipsychotic use by the end of 2012, the American Health Care Association formally announced last month. However, AHCA did renew the goal for 2013, and members also performed better in the reductions than nursing providers overall.
Long-term care organizations have responded to a report that physicians are prescribing antipsychotic medications for seniors without proper oversight from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. This is hampering efforts to reduce off-label antipsychotic use for dementia care in nursing homes, according to ProPublica, which compiled the report based on a review of Medicare Part D claims.
A majority of long-term care providers reduced hospital readmissions and the off-label use of antipsychotics within the last year, according to the American Health Care Association. The organization recently posted a progress report on the AHCA Quality Initiative, which was launched in February 2012.
With reimbursement increasingly tied to quality and safety measures, it's imperative providers have best practices in place, according to a "call to action" released by a healthcare quality group.