Currently working their way through the Texas legislature are two bills, House Bill 212 by Guillen and Senate Bill 199 by Gallegos.Senate Bill 199, if passed, would increase the personal needs allowance from $45 to $75 a month for residents in nursing homes, assisted living and ICF-MR facilities.House Bill 212 would require that health care facilities obtain a release from new employees within 72 hours of hiring. This release will allow access to certain information about the practitioner's … [Read more...] about Residents get more money and facilities get more forms
Ooo I love to dance a little sidestep,Now they see me, now they don't,I've come and gone,AND Oooo I love to sweep around the wide step,Cut a little swathe and lead the people on."- "The Sidestep," sung by the Governor in The Best Little Whorehouse in TexasRemember that little song and dance routine in the movie, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas? The Governor is exulting over his ability to pull the wool over people's eyes.When will we ever learn about the promises of politicians when it comes … [Read more...] about A “Little Side Step” Means You Get Stomped On! The Bed Tax and New Mexico.
I know that some in Texas support the idea of a provider tax on nursing homes to make up for shortfalls in Medicaid funding. For those who do--and those who don't know one way or another--I invite you to go read Dr. Bob at The Doctor is In about a similar tax his state of Washington contemplates putting on physicians for the same reason--a shortfall of Medicaid funding. I excerpt portions:The large majority of Washington physicians would prefer to see Medicaid patients, but are quite simply … [Read more...] about Medicaid and Provider Taxes–A Primer on Economics
Shrinkette, a psychiatrist, provides a roundup of the reflections of a number of Nurses on what it takes to survive in the profession. She begins with a list of what it takes to be a nurse compiled by a nursing instructor at Top of My Head:What is takes to be a nurse:1. To see people at their worst and know it was part of their job to help them in anyway they could.2. To be exposed to things that many people could never imagine and continue to do their job and not think twice about their career … [Read more...] about Reflections On Being A Nurse
The Washington Post reported that CMS has reconsidered its criteria for covering motorized wheelchairs. According to the writer, Cindy Skrzycki:The Medicare program recently introduced three major regulatory initiatives to tighten up eligibility, reduce payments and assure the legitimacy of the providers. Then you have to read through almost the entire long article about the history of this to find out what the initiatives are. I've excerpted them for you here:Reacting to the pressure, CMS … [Read more...] about Medicare & Wheelchairs
Fifteen hundred pages of rules governing the Medicare Prescription Drug program have now been published in final form. Are you feeling a little overwhelmed at this point?The Washington Post published a piece on this describing the changes made to the rules as proposed last summer:The agency also outlined several changes made in the regulations since a preliminary version was announced in July. They now assure that beneficiaries have access to convenient pharmacies, and charity payments have been … [Read more...] about Medicare Prescription Drug Rules Now Issued
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...] about Do Your Residents Use Plavix?
Dr. Charles alerts us to an archived editorial on tort reform published in the New York Times. Common Good excerpts the article here. The title of the article is It's Time to Try Special Health Courts. Here's the excerpt:We hold no brief for the current medical liability system, which does a poor job of compensating most victims of medical malpractice. An authoritative study of thousands of patients in New York State found that the vast majority who were harmed by medical errors or negligence … [Read more...] about What About Tort Reform?
Representative Deshotel has filed a bill which mandates that surveyors treat nursing facility staff with courtesy during inspections. It reads specifically:Sec. 242.0447. DUTIES OF REPRESENTATIVES. The department shall adopt written policies requiring representatives of the department to treat the residents of an institution and the institution's staff with courtesy, consideration, and respect during an inspection, survey, or investigation conducted under Section 242.043 or 242.044 or in … [Read more...] about Ms. Manners For Surveyors
Do you use a pharmacy that has adopted the Opus system or a similar system? Have you specified that any pharmacy who does business with your facility must use the Opus system including the part where the pharmacist generates the MARS and physician order forms and provides other services?If so, you may run afoul of DADS. Recently, a facility was cited for having such requirements on the basis that this is a violation of resident rights. As you know Rule 19.1502, Choice of Pharmacy states: A … [Read more...] about Resident Choice of Pharmacy vs. Facility Choice of Medication Distribution System