Cheryl Field

CMS Notice to Appeal

If your New Year’s Resolution included forgetting about your Payroll Based Journal system until February think again! The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently advised providers that an update to the PBJ system will be put in place over the weekend of Jan. 22.

The update will effect employee IDs with special characters and will require provider attention! 

What do providers need to do?

  • Run the 1700D Employee Report no later than Friday, Jan.20
  • Date Criteria – choose 365 days
  • Employee Status – choose “both”
  • Run the 1700D Employee Report on Monday, Jan.23 
  • Date Criteria – choose 365 days
  • Employee Status – choose “both”
  • Compare the two lists for any new Employee IDs

Should providers ignore this and a new employee is created in the CMS database the Turnover Rating on Nursing Home Compare will be affected.

If you are working with a vendor such as Prime Care Technologies, we will assist you with your PBJ staffing. You should notify your vendor of any employee IDs that change so the data on their data warehouse can get updated. Plus, time and attendance data will need to incorporate the new employee ID. Considering that there are only 23 days between the CMS update and the next PBJ submission due date, all providers are urged to address these changes ASAP. 

All data sent to CMS after the January update will need to have the new employee IDs. If you’re using Prime Care Technologies PBJ solution, we will show any Employees with IDs that do not meet the CMS criteria, displayed on a new Employee Data Errors tab, so you will know what needs to be corrected before a file can be downloaded and sent to CMS. If you’re working with another vendor, now is a great time to ask them how they can help you see employee IDs not meeting CMS criteria.

With the next quarter of PBJ data due February 14, now is the time to establish routine systems for daily, weekly and monthly actions that ensure smooth Payroll Based Journal (PBJ) submission to CMS each and every quarter. Following the best practice checklist below will ensure your submissions are on time and without errors.

  • Daily: Ensure designated staff enters contract employees and related hours
  • Weekly: Review hours submitted by your Labor company
    Their files typically go back only 21 days
    Failing to verify older data required the labor company to do a custom correction costing you time and money
  • Monthly- review all the data for the month and make note when you have done this verification
    For operators with multiple locations it helps if your software can record by whom and when  verification steps were taken
  • Review the CMS requirements for multi-file process which is required when employees are terminated and rehired in the same quarter.  Errors in hire and termination dates resulted in rejected files for many providers in November. 

We don’t exactly know when the PBJ data will begin to feed the Five Star Staffing composite of your Five Star Report. Since May 2016, primeVIEW has successfully generated PBJ files for clients. Keep PBJ submission running smoothly with proactive checkpoints each day, week and month of every quarter. Providers who implement best practices to improve the accuracy and efficiency of your PBJ data systems will be rewarded.

More documents on PBJ can be seen here and here.

Cheryl Field is the chief product officer at Prime Care Technologies.