CDC: COVID-19 Vaccination of Nursing Home Residents, and Rates of SARS-CoV-2 Infection/Hospitalization

COVID-19 Vaccination Coverage, and Rates of SARS-CoV-2 Infection and COVID-19–Associated Hospitalization Among Residents in Nursing Homes — National Healthcare Safety Network, United States, October 2023–February 2024 Weekly / April 18, 2024 / 73(15);339–344 Summary What is already known about this topic? Nursing home residents are at increased risk for severe COVID-19. …

Draft MDS v1.19.1 Data Specs: What to Know and How to Prepare for Oct. 1, 2024

Nurse assessment coordinators (NACs) and other interdisciplinary team members can breathe a little easier as they look ahead to the Oct. 1, 2024 implementation of the MDS version 1.19.1 item sets. The MDS 3.0 Item Set Change History for October 2024 v1.19.1 in the Jan. 12, 2024 release of the …

Medicare Advantage Final Rule Includes Expedited Determination Process Changes for SNFs

See the section “Enhance Enrollees’ Rights to Appeal a Medicare Advantage Plan’s Decision to Terminate Coverage for Non-Hospital Provider Services” for details on expedited determination changes for Medicare Advantage residents. Contract Year 2025 Medicare Advantage and Part D Final Rule (CMS-4205-F) On April 4, 2024, the Centers for Medicare & …

FY 2025 SNF PPS Proposed Rule: CMS Seeks More Enforcement Power With CMPs

A survey finding of noncompliance with the Medicare and Medicaid requirements of participation may soon be a little more difficult for nursing homes to navigate without significant financial burden. In the March 28, 2024 Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System (SNF PPS) proposed rule, the Centers …

FY 2025 SNF PPS Proposed Rule: Four Key Proposals for NACs to Keep an Eye on

In the March 28, 2024 Fiscal Year (FY) 2025 Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System (SNF PPS) proposed rule, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) doesn’t propose the dizzying number of changes that ended up in the FY 2024 SNF PPS final rule. However, nurse assessment coordinators (NACs) …

Isolation Coding on the MDS: MAC Target Drives Home Documentation Needs

Almost all nursing homes are currently staffing-challenged, and that has a direct impact on the quality of the documentation available to support MDS coding, points out Brenda Sowash, RN, RAC-CT, director of clinical assessments, standards, and practices for Trinity Health Senior Communities in Livonia, MI. “Nursing staff have to prioritize …

Why NACs Need to Actively Manage Physician Certs/Recerts—and What to Look for

The nurse assessment coordinator (NAC) who also serves as the primary Medicare nurse doesn’t always complete either the physician certification/recertification process or the beneficiary notification process for Medicare residents, says Scott Heichel, RN, RAC-MT, RAC-CTA, DNS-CT, IPCO, QCP, ICC, director of clinical reimbursement for LeaderStat in Powell, OH. Heichel will …

Process Surveillance Plus QAPI Equals Better Infection Prevention Training

Nursing homes are required to establish a surveillance system (i.e., “the routine, ongoing, and systematic collection, analysis, interpretation, and dissemination of surveillance data”) as part of their infection prevention and control program (IPCP) under F-tag 880 (Infection Prevention and Control) in Appendix PP of the State Operations Manual. This surveillance …

Learn How to Take Staff Survey Preparation From Reactive to Proactive

“Why in the world did my staff member say this?” and “Why did my staff do that?” are two questions that no director of nursing services (DNS) wants to have when reading the Statement of Deficiencies and Plan of Correction (form CMS-2567) handed out by the state survey team at …

Interrupted Stays: Five Takeaways To Remember

The interrupted-stay policy in the Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) of the Medicare Part A Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System (SNF PPS) governs when multiple SNF stays are combined into a single interrupted stay (i.e., one continued stay that includes one or more interruption windows) vs. when they are treated …