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Clinical briefs for Tuesday, April 20

FDA revokes a COVID antibody drug; others remain available … Once-a-week insulin treatment equals daily therapy in diabetes study … Two remedesivir drug combo treatments equally effective, NIH study finds … Bill proposes expanded senior access to community pharmacies … Boosters in our future? Drugmakers appear to be planning on it … CDC: Spring flu spike of years past hasn’t happened in 2021

Vaccine mandates are legal, but not without their own risks

With the federal Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program now complete, responsibility for COVID-19 vaccinations of new residents and staff has shifted to the long-term care facilities themselves.  This leaves operators with the dilemma of whether to mandate employee vaccinations.   First, all long-term care providers are presented with the question of whether to mandate covid-19…


CMS to providers: Help us determine your PDPM cuts

Providers will have a say in how the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recalibrates its Patient-Driven Payment Model, agency officials reiterated in a call with skilled nursing operators Thursday where they outlined their attempt to rein in spending. Agency officials encouraged providers to submit suggestions for particular cost-cutting methods during a SNF/Long-Term Care Open…

Is the doctor in? Improve nursing homes with one easy stroke

Many nursing home COVID-19 patients would have benefitted from daily, reimbursed-for physician visits in their skilled nursing facilities, but they were not entitled to them.  With an epic crisis still at hand, the quickest way to improve performance and public perception of nursing homes is to introduce daily covered visits. Astonishingly, Medicare and Medicaid suggest…

Refocus on capturing PDPM drivers to improve care, quality and reimbursement

With the prioritization of COVID-19 vaccinations in nursing facilities since late December, facilities nationwide have seen  a significant decline in both new cases and deaths among resident populations. Though the decline of COVID-19 cases is very encouraging, many skilled nursing facilities are now facing widespread  systemic issues that the pandemic exposed. Ongoing and dynamic infection…

Clinical Updates

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Stable LTC antipsychotic prescribing in 2020 may reflect success of U.S. reduction initiatives

University of Michigan researchers have found relatively minimal changes in central nervous system-active medication use among Michigan nursing home residents with dementia following the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, a finding that may be explained in part by regulatory pressures to reduce antipsychotic prescribing in U.S. skilled nursing facilities.  With the disruptions in daily routines…