HHSC – Learning Collaborative Summit

HHSC has posted information on the August 27th - 28th Statewide Learning Collaborative Summit, including the livestream link and agenda, on the┬áDates and Deadlines page. Visit us at Garlo Ward, PC … [Read more...]

Information and Provider Letters: Critical Incident Reporting

The Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) released three information letters and one provider letter: Resident Choice of Health Professionals DADS reminded Assisted Living Facilities (ALFs) and Home and Community Support Services Agencies of a resident's right to choose and contract with his or her own health care professionals. According to DADS, ALFs must specify in the facility resident admission agreement any requirements the facility imposes on non-facility … [Read more...]

The Fairness in Nursing Home Arbitration Act of 2008

Congress is considering the Fairness in Nursing Home Arbitration Act of 2008, which make pre-admission arbitration agreements invalid and unenforceable. The House Judiciary Subcommittee on Commercial Law and Administrative Law just approved the bill and refused amendments which would prevent it from being applied retroactively, among other things. Specifically, the bill: ...requires that agreements to arbitrate nursing home disputes be made after the dispute has arisen and not at the time … [Read more...]

Information Letter and Memo for Nursing Facilities

The Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) informed nursing facility administrators about the Nursing Facility Quality Review Process for 2008. This year, the Nurse Aid Competency Evaluation Services Plus Foundation, Inc. will conduct evaluations, accessing residents' clinical records and behavior monitoring logs. Download the letter for more information. According to a memo to Regulatory Service Regional Directors and State Office Managers, surveyors must accept and display … [Read more...]

Footage of Physical Abuse in a Nursing Facility

ABC News has released footage of a health care worker beating a resident whom, it appears, was not cooperating with attempts to care for him. The beating appears quite vicious. The family had, unknown to facility staff, installed a hidden camera in the room of the resident, who resides in a Baltimore, Maryland nursing home. As you know, here in Texas, the law addresses covert monitoring--but lays out no real and affirmative sanctions against residents and family members who do it. So, … [Read more...]

Texas Register Updates: Medicaid Payment Limits; Patients Rights

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) will submit Amendment Number 747 to the Texas State Plan for Medical Assistance. From the September 8 Texas Register: Amendment 747 revises the methodology used by the State to estimate the Medicaid Upper Payment Limit (UPL) for hospital inpatient services. The UPL is the federal limit on Medicaid payments to a group of hospitals and is determined under Federal regulations as a reasonable estimate of the amount that would be paid for the … [Read more...]

New CPR Guidelines From AHA

KidneyNotes.com posts about the new CPR guidelines. As the post notes, the highlights are: *The ratio of compressions-to-ventilations has been changed to 30:2 *Rescuers now deliver 1 shock (360J monophasic) followed by CPR, not 3 shocks *Lay rescuers no longer check for circulation *Many other algorithms have been simplified These are published in the Nov 29, 2005 issue of Circulation. KidneyNotes has formatted some easy links to the above for you to read. Click here to see … [Read more...]

Unintended Consequences

Back last November, I wrote about rumblings in Florida to require criminal background checks on prospective resident. In Illinois, they've apparently passed such a law and are now about to suffer the consequences:Emergency rules implementing the recently signed legislation require all 100,000 current nursing home residents to undergo a criminal background check and be checked against sex offender databases maintained by the Illinois State Police and the Illinois Department of Corrections. The … [Read more...]

Do Your Residents Use Plavix?

The New York Times published a piece about a study raising questions about its safety:Patients taking Plavix, a popular and expensive antistroke drug, experience more than 12 times as many ulcers as patients who take aspirin plus a heartburn pill, a study to be published today in The New England Journal of Medicine found.Up to half of those now taking Plavix do so because their doctors assume that Plavix is safer on the stomach than aspirin, said Dr. Francis K. L. Chan, the study's lead author. … [Read more...]

Criminal Checks of Nursing Home Residents?

On November 15, 2004, CBS news reported on an incident involving alleged resident-on- resident sexual abuse in a Florida nursing home. The resident-suspect, a man in his 80's, had been found wandering the streets by Florida law enforcement. A Florida court declared him a "vulnerable adult ... in need of protective services." Thus, the officials caused him to be admitted to the nursing home--where he allegedly sexually abused another resident.Buried further down in the story, it is noted that … [Read more...]