News

Category: Federal News

Welcome to the Federal News category. These news items pertain to aging services national policies and programs.

CMS 5-Star Report Webinar Recording Now Available

The Nov. 18 webinar, Understanding the CMS 5-Star Analysis Report to Guide Quality Improvement featuring Susan Chenail, RN, CCM, RAC-CT, Senior Quality Improvement Analyst from LeadingAge New York, is now available to view.

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Department of Labor Issues Rule Increasing Minimum Hourly Wage for Federal Contractors

On Nov. 24, the United States Department of Labor (DOL) published a final rule increasing the minimum hourly wage for federal contractors to $15 beginning Jan. 30, 2022. This document finalizes regulations to implement an Executive Order signed by President Biden in April and moves the hourly minimum up from its current level of $10.95.

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Take the LeadingAge Quarterly Affordable Housing Survey

It's time for the LeadingAge quarterly affordable housing survey! LeadingAge, our national affiliate, is conducting its regular survey on affordable housing, and we encourage you to participate.

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CMS Announces 2022 Medicare Premiums and Deductibles

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services have released the 2022 premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance amounts for the Medicare Part A and Part B programs.

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Critical LTC Investment in Moving in Congress

Congress is currently working on the Build Back Better Act, the second part of President Biden's infrastructure improvement effort. The BBB is a $1.75 trillion proposal to enhance and improve "social" infrastructure, including services to older adults. It is currently being finalized in the House. Then it will head to the Senate and, once both houses agree, to the President. The current version of the bill includes the following investments in programs for older adults-

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Five Star Analysis Reports are Valuable Tool for Care Centers

This week, LeadingAge sent all care center members updated Five Star Analysis reports reflecting data through the second quarter of this year for staffing and MDS measures and through the first quarter of this year for claims-based measures.

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Understanding and Responding to Immediate Jeopardy Citations

As members are acutely aware, Immediate Jeopardy (IJ) citations for nursing homes have increased significantly compared to prior years, and 2021 is proving to be no exception.

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Argentum Launches New Campaign to Promote PRF Payments for Assisted Living

Argentum officially kicked off its latest awareness campaign directed at policymakers in the Biden Administration and Congress. The theme of this campaign is "Don’t Leave Assisted Living Behind, Again," underscoring the continued disparities in relief and support that has been made available to senior living and the need to rectify it moving forward, including with the Phase 4 PRF payments.

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CMS Extends Waiver Window for Facilities Using Fire Safety Evaluation System

CMS has opened a pressure-relief valve for nursing facilities that rely upon the Fire Safety Evaluation System (FSES) as an alternative means to demonstrate compliance with fire safety requirements of NFPA 101®: Life Safety Code® (LSC).  This issue affects only a small number of nursing facilities in Minnesota, but we want to make sure those who may be impacted have the latest information.

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LeadingAge Affordable Housing Calls Address Mental Health, REAC Inspections, and the NSPIRE Demo Program

The LeadingAge Housing Advisory Group call on Monday, Oct. 18 at 11:30 a.m. will feature guest speaker Dr. Eric Berko. In honor of World Mental Health Day, Dr. Berko will review mental health challenges for staff and residents at affordable housing communities and discuss strategies for success.

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New Website: OpeningDoors.org

OpeningDoors.org is live! In July, LeadingAge, our national affiliate, launched Opening Doors to Aging Services, a long-term initiative to offer members and the entire field research, strategies, and resources to inform and align efforts across the sector.

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Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Application Portal Open

Earlier this week, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) opened the application portal for the latest Provider Relief Funds (PRF) round. In this round, $25.5 billion in funding is available for health care providers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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HUD Announces Fourth Round of COVID-19 Supplemental Payments

On Sept. 16, HUD announced the fourth round of COVID-19 Supplemental Payments (CSPs) for Multifamily housing providers. The funds are available to help Section 8, Section 202, and Section 811 properties prepare for and respond to COVID-19. Requests are due to the agency by Nov. 19 and can cover expenses incurred between April 1 and Oct. 31.

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NHSN Changes Coming: Get your Level 3 Access Now

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has informed LeadingAge that changes are coming to the weekly NHSN COVID-19 Vaccination Data Collection Forms for Long-Term Care Facilities that will require Level 3 access for reporting.

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Affordable Housing Members Call on Staffing Issues with LeadingAge National

Join our LeadingAge, our national affiliate, for a housing call on Monday, Sept. 13 at 11:30 a.m. CT to discuss staffing issues in affordable housing communities.

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Contact Your Lawmakers in D.C. Today

Share your thoughts on vaccine mandates. Show your support for the Infrastructure Bill.

Join your peers from around the country in a national advocacy effort and contact your elected officials today. LeadingAge, our national affiliate, has launched two grassroots campaigns and now is the time to act. Send a message to your U.S. Representatives and Senators.

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Engage with Argentum’s “Release the PRF” Campaign

Argentum, a national affiliate of LeadingAge Minnesota, has launched a 5-week campaign to encourage the federal government to release Provider Relief Funds promised to long-term care providers to assist in responding to COVID-19.

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LeadingAge and Argentum Urge OSHA Not to Make COVID Standards Permanent

In public comments filed this week, both LeadingAge and Argentum urged the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) not to make the agency's Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) for COVID-19 a permanent part of the regulatory landscape. The ETS is only effective for six months from its publication date of June 21 unless OSHA acts to make it permanent.

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LeadingAge Working to Extend Flexibility Relating to Fire Safety Evaluation System

The LeadingAge Minnesota staff team is working to identify care center members who rely upon the Fire Safety Evaluation System (FSES) as an alternative means to demonstrate compliance with fire safety requirements of NFPA 101®: Life Safety Code® (LSC).

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New SNF Medicare Rates Take Effect on Oct. 1

Based on the annual SNF Payment Rule released earlier this summer, new skilled nursing facility (SNF) Medicare rates for the third year of the Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) take effect on Oct. 1. The Oct. 1 rates include an inflation update of 1.2% based on a formula in existing law. Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has suspended the Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) program for the upcoming rate year.

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