As drama rages over whether Congress will allow the federal government to grind to a halt Friday night due to a funding tug-of-war, long-term care providers will anxiously watch to see if a repeal of Medicare Part B therapy caps will be a part of any solution.
Sure, a tax overhaul bill that has a significant segment of providers quivering is picking up steam and should be on the president's desk soon. But there's also other legislation being considered that should have providers acting like tiny tots with their eyes all aglow.
State execs, providers and other top long-term care leaders will visit their members of Congress during the American Health Care Association's Congressional "fly-in" event Monday and Tuesday.
Congress is getting more involved in healthcare interoperability. Lawmakers have proposed legislation calling for changes to the process in order to speed up and broaden provider inclusion by the end of 2018.
Providers using incompatible or uncertified electronic health record systems by the end of 2018 could face reduced Medicare reimbursements under a bill introduced Thursday in both houses of Congress.
Nursing homes' biggest national ally and advocate is making the rounds on Capitol Hill this week in an effort to convince Congress to let die a lengthy experiment to withhold therapy claims while it roots out fraud.
Congressional caucus to focus on family caregivers, includes AHCA ... OTC medications cause of most drug-induced liver failure deaths ... Nursing home aide in Maine serving 45 days for assault on resident ... ACP releases new pressure ulcer guidelines
Long-term care providers are not only preparing residents, staff and special work cycles for year-end holidays. Many are also looking to capitalize on lawmakers being home from Washington by inviting them for a visit.
Long-term care advocacy group cheers executive order barring arbitration agreements, urges further actionAugust 04, 2014
A prominent long-term care consumer advocacy group hailed a recent executive order banning certain government contractors from using arbitration agreements, saying this is a step toward eliminating these agreements in nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
More than 400 long-term and post-acute care professionals from across the country completed meetings with their respective federal lawmakers Wednesday in Washington. The meetings were the conclusion of the annual Congressional Briefing event hosted by the American Health Care Association and the National Center for Assisted Living.
As far as skilled care is concerned, most recent reporting on a major Medicare bill has all but overlooked what's in the bill for the sector. And it's not trivial.
Major League teams don't celebrate World Series victories midway through the season. But politicians do the equivalent all the time. Consider a revised Medicare payment plan that was joyously unveiled on Thursday.
I suppose it's only fitting that during the week of the season's biggest football game, Washington healthcare wonks are discussing a potential huge punt of their own.
It's funny, most of the time, Congress gets along about as well as the Hatfields and the McCoys. But if there is one thought that seems to unify our elected officials, it's this: Nursing homes and other providers must be receiving too many tax dollars.
The Long-Term Care Commission is looking for feedback from providers following its second meeting held yesterday. The committee wants to hear providers' proposals before it makes recommendations to Congress at the end of September.
Providers will focus on promoting solutions to the "doc fix," bad debt and the observation stay loophole during visits with their Congressional representatives Tuesday. And they shouldn't forget the power of offering solutions to lawmakers who are constantly contending with gridlock, the head of the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living said at the group's spring "fly-in" gathering.
You might not be old enough to remember the "Schoolhouse Rock" videos that aired between cartoons on Saturday mornings during the 1970s. One of my favorites was "I'm Just a Bill." Long-term care novices could learn a lot from it — to a point.
All eyes will be on Congress when it reconvenes Monday. Lawmakers will have just four days to act if they are to derail automatic spending cuts that would take 2% off the top of Medicare reimbursements. Senior housing and home- and community-based care funding would have it worse, both facing funding cuts of 5.1%. Many are resigned to the idea that the highly partisan Congress will not stop the "sequestration" from hitting, unlike late last year. But how badly it will ultimately affect long-term care and other services, no one really knows. There also has been speculation that lawmakers will let the sequestration cuts hit but then act to soften their blow in the near future. One silver lining for providers: Medicaid funding would not be affected by sequestration.
Republican House leaders say they will continue to fight a part of the healthcare reform law that could lead to Medicare spending reductions without direct input from Congress. The House was scheduled to vote on rules for the 113th Congress Thursday. Part of them would include a GOP-promoted package that would disallow powers of the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB).
Hospitals have been undergoing more and more restrictions on re-admissions and are now facing financial penalties in some situations. Unfortunately, this has also resulted in more patients not being classified as "admits" or "re-admits," but rather getting coded as "observation" stays.
As $6 billion investments go, the 2012 presidential and Congressional races didn't deliver much of a return. Except, of course, for people who like to spend money in order to keep things the way they are.
Despite the customary complaints about negativity and the avalanche of TV ads, the 2012 campaign was unusually substantive from the standpoint of the entitlement reform discussion because both sides were required to make their best arguments about how we as a nation will protect seniors' Medicare funding in an era of unprecedented fiscal chaos.
LTC, other healthcare sectors to blitz administration about sequestration cuts, possible alternativesNovember 09, 2012
When President Obama speaks today about mandated sequestration cuts to Medicare funding, he is expected to set off the most intense period of lobbying yet among healthcare providers. Long-term care stakeholders are especially fearful of the potential compounding effect the 2% across-the-board reductions could have, given other restrictions already in play. One solution LTC lobbyists are recommending: A massive exception them from the mandate, much as the defense sector enjoys. Congress put off taking action earlier on the funding cuts but now the piper must be paid — unless lawmakers somehow act to mitigate or otherwise postpone the cuts again.
When he gave his acceptance speech Tuesday night, President Obama told the nation that "the best is yet to come." Many long-term care operators may not be in full agreement.
Like a pedestrian at a dangerous intersection, long-term care providers find themselves waiting for the stoplight to change when it comes to reimbursement policy.
If you're wondering what Wednesday night's presidential debate means for long-term care, you have plenty of company.
Skilled nursing facilities in the most populous states will be the hardest hit if Congress enacts the 2% across-the-board cut in Medicare payments to providers, two new analyses predict.
Preserving Medicaid funding remains the top priority for the largest nursing home association in the United States as Congress heads back into session this week.
Now that the Olympics are over, let politics take center stage again. Clearly, no one is interested in winning the silver medal when it comes to the race for U.S. president. But interest in second bananas IS high.
The Obama Administration has one month to issue a report detailing whether Medicare providers will see 2% across-the-board cuts based on legislation signed by the president Tuesday.