News

Category: Featured News

Welcome to the Featured News category. The following news items include major developments in the aging services world, as well as important notifications and timely reminders.

Moratorium Exceptions Process Application Posted

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) recently posted the application materials for a new round of the nursing facility moratorium exceptions process on the MDH website. Care centers interested in applying for approval to fund a construction project will need to complete all of the required application materials and return them to MDH by March 17, 2022.

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Workgroup at an Impasse on Frontline Worker Bonuses; Prospects for Special Session Grow Dim

The Frontline Worker Pay Work Group met yesterday—more than a month past its designated deadline for reaching an agreement—and announced that there was still no agreement for distributing the $250 million designated by the legislature for frontline worker bonuses.

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Survey Tool for Assisted Living Meals and Menu Requirements Now Available

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has made the survey tool for assisted living meals and menus available. The tool provides insight into how compliance with the USDA Guidelines will be interpreted. 

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Self-Assessment Released for LALD Students

The Board of Executives for Long Term Services and Supports (BELTSS) has released the self-assessment tools for Licensed Assisted Living Director (LALD) students to utilize during their field experience. The self-assessment is part of a more extensive Assisted Living Director in Residence (ALDIR) toolkit, now available on the BELTSS website under "Forms and Tutorials."  This toolkit will be the foundation for the field experience as mentors, and LALD students begin their time together. 

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New Workforce, Demographics Data Updated in Environmental Scan

LeadingAge Minnesota has recently completed an update of our environmental scan, which tracks key trends and issues across various essential categories, including demographics, workforce, payment and consumer preferences. The scan is an excellent tool for use in strategic planning discussions with boards and other key leaders.

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Top Cited Deficiencies from Nursing Home Recertification Surveys

The information available from the CMS Quality, Certification and Oversight Reports (QCOR) database shows that the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) completed 100 nursing facility recertification surveys during the federal fiscal year ending Sept. 30. There is some lag time in survey data entry, so the year-end total is likely slightly higher. Here's a sampling of the data:

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DHS Delays Transition to Fingerprint-Based Background Studies

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) has pushed out the target dates for moving from emergency background studies back to studies with fingerprints and photographs. 

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Workforce Data Illustrates Huge Challenges Faced by Members

Due to the vast scale of workforce challenges faced by providers, the Long-Term Care Imperative recently conducted a workforce survey of care center and assisted living providers to measure the scope of the problems and to influence policymakers in support of a much-needed response.

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Payment Committee Hosting Special Meeting on Care Center Rates

The LeadingAge Minnesota Payment Committee is holding a special meeting next Wednesday, Oct. 6, at 10 a.m. to discuss the status of care center Medicaid rates for 2022 in light of recent information from DHS on their plans to implement cost offsets due to federal aid received by providers.

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Statewide Survey on Staffing Crisis Will Inform Solutions

LeadingAge Minnesota has been working intensively with state agency leaders to illustrate the seriousness and urgency of the workforce crisis facing providers and collaborate on identifying solutions and support to respond.

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Do You Have Assisted Living Required Postings?

As we settle into the new assisted living requirements, it is a good time for self-auditing. According to the new law, an assisted living must post the following:

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MDH Engages Contractors to Conduct Nursing Home Surveys

Beginning this week, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is utilizing contractors from an agency called Healthcare Management Solutions (HMS) to conduct nursing home recertification surveys, which are currently backlogged at the Department. 

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MDH Releases BCA Transition Details

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) released a notice via GovDelivery indicating a transition pathway for Basic Care Aides (BCA) to become Nursing Assistants through an expedited process before the end of the 1135 Waiver.

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Final Wednesday Edition of LeadingAge Minnesota’s Advantage

This is the very last week you will receive LeadingAge Minnesota’s Advantage newsletter on a Wednesday. Starting next week, you can expect it to be delivered to your inbox every Thursday afternoon.

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Federal Government Releases Additional Provider Relief Funds (PRF)

Last week the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) announced that it is making $25.5 billion in new funding available for health care providers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Many Questions Remain about CMS and OSHA Vaccine Mandates

As part of a broad COVID-19 Action Plan released late last week, President Biden announced new vaccine mandates for workers across the country. The plan addresses several topics relevant to aging services, including preparation for the delivery of booster shots if approved and recommended by the FDA and CDC, and efforts to build the supply of rapid COVID tests, but the most prominent aspects of the White House plan relate to mandates.

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At the Capitol: Minnesota Lawmakers Working Overtime on Hero Pay Bonus Package

Thursday, Sept. 2 marked the final working group meeting for Hero Pay. Since July, lawmakers have been meeting to finalize how the $250 million allocated to reward frontline workers will be distributed. In their final meeting, co-chairs Senator Housley and Majority Leader Winkler indicated that progress is being made. However, they have yet to reach a consensus and will continue the conversation beyond their self-imposed deadline of Sept. 7.

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Workforce Survey Results to Inform Key Advocacy to Address Staffing Challenges

This week, the Long-Term Care Imperative is conducting a survey of workforce conditions faced by care center and assisted living members.

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DHS Announces Timeline for Return to Background Studies with Fingerprints

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) has announced a plan for moving from emergency background studies back to studies with fingerprints and photographs.

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MN Senators Urge Biden Administration to Release PRF Funds Immediately

Minnesota Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith joined a group of 43 senators urging U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra to distribute the funds remaining in the Provider Relief Fund (PRF) and other health care relief programs.

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