Based on the OIG Audit Report: Financial Impact of Clustering Therapy Services During MDS Assessment Look-Back Periods for Texas Medicaid Residents of Long-Term Care Nursing Facilities, Texas HHS has issued a provider letter for Nursing facilities outlining best practices: ? Resident functional declines that do not warrant a significant change in status assessment (SCSA) should be clearly documented in the clinical record to support therapy evaluation and treatment orders. ? … [Read more...] about Nursing Facility Rehabilitation Services & Best Practices Provider Letter–Texas
Hurricanes, Nursing Home Administrators & the Cajun Navy
Hurricane season is upon us with all the attendant risks to nursing homes and their residents. Nursing Home Administrators should watch this new documentary about the Cajun Navy for some important lessons about what not to do...including slavishly following the dictates of the corporate office. Your license could be at jeopardy and you could be discussed in the next documentary, like an administrator is in this one. Make sure that your emergency preparedness plan is up-to-date and your staff … [Read more...] about Hurricanes, Nursing Home Administrators & the Cajun Navy
Rural Health Care in the News
Two interesting articles have been recently published. One deals with the closing of the hospital in rural Milam County, Texas. This has caused residents to travel further for care and has disincentivized some to seek needed care. Days after the two hospitals in Milam County abruptly shuttered in December, Renee Mueck started feeling stomach pain so sharp she couldn’t drive herself to the nearest hospital about 40 minutes away. Mueck, 60, said her husband drove her to a hospital … [Read more...] about Rural Health Care in the News
Nursing Home Staffing Levels Lower than Reported?
Modern Healthcare magazine is reporting that the results of a study published in Health Affairs are indicating that staffing levels are "often lower than reported" and "below what CMS expects." One area of special concern is staffing of RN's: "The numbers were most stark for RNs, where 91% of the organizations met expectations less than 60% of the time. Almost all facilities are required to have at least one RN on site for at least eight hours every day. But nearly 4% of … [Read more...] about Nursing Home Staffing Levels Lower than Reported?
Comprehensive Review of Nursing Home Regulations Planned?
Administrator Seema Verma has directed CMS to undergo a comprehensive reive of nursing home regulations, guidance and processes: Administrator Seema Verma said that the goal is to bolster safety and quality in SNFs across the country. “This is not business as usual — we are pushing beyond the status quo,” she wrote in a blog post Monday. “CMS’ approach to oversight of nursing homes is constantly evolving,” she added. “Just as we’re unleashing innovative strategies and technologies in other … [Read more...] about Comprehensive Review of Nursing Home Regulations Planned?
Proposed Rule Regarding Reimbursement Methodology for Nursing Facilities
HHSC has proposed a rule change for 1TAC §355.306 regarding final cost reports for changes of ownership for Nursing Facilities. The new rule would read as follows: §355.306.Cost Finding Methodology. (a) - (d) (No change.) (e) Final cost reports for change of ownership. When a facility changes ownership, for a provider who participates in the rate enhancement program, the prior owner must submit a final Staffing and Compensation Report as described in §355.308 of this title. When a facility … [Read more...] about Proposed Rule Regarding Reimbursement Methodology for Nursing Facilities
#MeToo and Health Care –Part 1
With the Gary Nassar investigation and trial, #MeToo drew attention to sexual harassment and abuse in the healthcare profession. This is the first in a series of posts discussing that issue and how to deal effectively with it. Such misconduct can be directed at other employees, patients, consumers or visitors. This first post will define what sexual harassment is in the employment context. Sexual harassment includes but is not limited to: Conduct of a sexual nature that … [Read more...] about #MeToo and Health Care –Part 1
HHSC Clarifies Expedited Life Safety Code Inspection Time Frames
On October 2, 2018, HHSC issued a Long-Term Care Regulatory letter to clarify previous letters regarding time frames for expedited Life Safety Code Inspections. The letter is located here. Here are pertinent quotes from the letter: A NF or ALF license applicant may submit a written request for an ELSC and fee at any time during the application process. When the licensing specialist has a complete application and fee, and a written request for ESLC inspection and fee a request is made to … [Read more...] about HHSC Clarifies Expedited Life Safety Code Inspection Time Frames
Provider Letter Regarding Incident Reporting Requirements
Provider Letter PL 2018-20 (Replaces PL 13-04 and PL 18-07) This letter gives directives to the following provider types: Assisted Living Facilities (ALFs), Day Activity and HealthnServices (DAHS) Facilities, Home and Community Support Services Agencies (HCSSAs), Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with an Intellectual Disability (ICFs/IID), Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care Centers (PPECs) Nursing Facilities (NFs) A provider (as listed above) must include in an initial … [Read more...] about Provider Letter Regarding Incident Reporting Requirements
Provider Letter: Feeding Assistance Rules for Nursing Facilities
Provider Letter PL 18-17 (NF) This letter addresses feeding assistance care for nursing home residents and staffing requirements to implement rules. HHSC and Long Term Care Regulatory (LTCR) determined that the topic of feeding assistance required an updated and consolidated communication to providers. The letter details: Policy Details & Provider Responsibilities: A paid feeding assistant is an individual who meets the requirements specified in the Texas Administrative Code who is … [Read more...] about Provider Letter: Feeding Assistance Rules for Nursing Facilities