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CMS Releases Nursing Home Survey Guidance for Phase 3 Requirements

On June 30, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

On June 29, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released long-awaited updates to the nursing home surveyor guidance found in Appendix PP to the State Operations Manual.

CMS Plans Site Visits to Assess HCBS Settings Rule Compliance

On June 23, 2022 by Bobbie Guidry

The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) has been notified by The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) of their plans to conduct site visits of several provider settings this summer to review their compliance with the Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings Rule. Site visits will occur the week of July 25.

CMS Relaxes Frequency of Inspection for Vaccination Requirement Compliance

On June 16, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

This week, CMS announced that survey oversight of the staff vaccination mandate for Medicare and Medicaid-certified providers and suppliers will continue to be performed during initial and recertification surveys but will now only be performed in response to complaints alleging non-compliance with this requirement, not all complaint surveys. This news comes after CMS determined that 95% of nearly 12,000 providers and suppliers surveyed by states have been in substantial compliance with this requirement.

Care Centers: Submit Comments to CMS by June 10 to Impact SNF PPS Proposed Rule

On June 9, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

Comments on the proposed Fiscal Year 2023 Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Prospective Payment System (PPS) rule are due to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) by the end of the day Friday, June 10.

With New Booster Guidance, What Does “Up-to-Date” Mean for LTC

On June 9, 2022 by Kari Everson

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated recommendations for an additional COVID-19 vaccination booster (fourth shot) on May 24. The updates provide a recommendation for a second booster for those people 12 and older if they are moderately to severely immunocompromised and individuals 50 years of age and older.

Attention Care Centers: Submit Comments to CMS by June 10 to Impact SNF PPS Proposed Rule

On June 2, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

Comments on the proposed the Fiscal Year 2023 Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Prospective Payment System (PPS) rule are due to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on June 10.

Nursing Homes Action Alert: Write to CMS to Oppose Proposed Payment Cuts

On May 19, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

We encourage care centers to participate in a letter-writing campaign targeted at payment cuts proposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

Act Now! Advocacy Essential to Ensure Access to Care for Minnesota’s Seniors

On May 19, 2022 by Libbie Chapuran

It’s crunch time on the advocacy front! At the state level, we are in the final days of the legislative session and funding for aging services in still in play. Without our encouragement, funding could easily be left out of a final budget agreement.

Reminder: Certain CMS COVID Waivers Expire May 7

On May 5, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

Several of the CMS blanket COVID-19 waivers are expiring on May 7.

In a memorandum released last month, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it will terminate several temporary emergency declaration blanket waivers that have provided nursing facilities and other provider types with flexibilities designed to support the COVID response.

Expedited Paid Feeding Assistant Curriculum is Available for Free until June 6!

On April 28, 2022 by Anna Mowry

The expedited Paid Feeding Assistant training allowed by CMS throughout the pandemic will end in June.

Last year, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) modified the minimum training requirement for Paid Feeding Assistants from eight hours to one hour under a waiver from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). In an April 7 Memorandum, CMS announced it will terminate the waiver on June 6.

CMS Updates COVID-19 Test Reporting Requirements

On April 21, 2022 by Kari Everson

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) updated its test reporting guidance, making reporting negative or inconclusive COVID-19 test results optional for nursing homes.

CMS Issues Updated Vaccine Mandate Survey Guidance

On April 7, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has posted updated interpretive guidance concerning the staff vaccination mandate, with a revision date of April 5. We encourage care centers to review QSO 22-07-ALL (Revised) and the changes to Attachment A.

CMS Announces End Dates for Various COVID Waivers, Including Nurse Aide Certification

On April 7, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

In a Memorandum released on April 7, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it will terminate several temporary emergency declaration blanket waivers that have provided nursing facilities and other provider types with flexibilities designed to support the COVID response.

As Details of White House Nursing Home Proposal Emerge, More Questions Arise

On March 3, 2022 by LeadingAge

This week President Biden announced a wide-ranging nursing home reform initiative to be implemented by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). The announcement was timed to coincide with the State of the Union Address, but President Biden made only a very brief reference to one small part of his reform package in his speech Tuesday evening. After analyzing the proposal, we have more questions than answers, and the timeline for change is unclear.

CMS Staff Vaccination Rule: Phase 2 Deadline is Feb. 28

On February 24, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

Implementation of the CMS staff vaccination mandate continues in full swing, with the Phase 2 compliance deadline arriving on Monday, Feb. 28.

New CMS Resource Available: SNF QRP Public Reporting Tip Sheet

On February 3, 2022 by Julie Apold

CMS has issued a Second Edition Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Quality Reporting Program (QRP) COVID-19 Public Reporting Tip Sheet to help providers understand CMS' public reporting approach to the SNF QRP to account for CMS quality data submissions that were either optional or excepted from public reporting due to the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE).

CMS and CDC National Nursing Home Stakeholder Call

On February 3, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) held a national stakeholder call on Feb. 2 to update its listeners regarding COVID-19, revisions to nursing home guidance, and best practices. The following is a summary for those who could not listen in on the call.

CMS Expected to Post Weekend Staffing and Turnover Data to Care Compare This Week

On January 27, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

As of Wednesday, Jan. 26, CMS is posting new information to the public-facing Care Compare website for nursing homes.

First, CMS has added data about the level of weekend RN staffing and total nurse staffing (e.g., RN, LPN, and CNA), reported in terms of the average number of RN and total nurse hours worked per resident per day on weekends. As presented, the data compares a specific facility’s weekend staffing to the national average and the Minnesota average.

CMS Updates Nursing Home Survey Tools for Staff Vaccination Mandate

On January 27, 2022 by Jonathan Lips

Thursday, Jan. 27, marks Minnesota's Phase 1 compliance deadline for the CMS staff vaccination rule. Surveyors are now reviewing for nursing home compliance with this requirement on all initial certification, standard recertification surveys, and all complaint surveys, regardless of what issue the complaint involves. 

Health Care Worker Return-to-Work FAQs

On January 20, 2022 by Kari Everson

The CDC released revisions to their Interim Guidance for Managing Healthcare Personnel with SARS-CoV-2 Infection or Exposure to SARS-CoV-2 and Strategies to Mitigate Healthcare Personnel (HCW) Staffing Shortages on Dec. 23, 2021, significantly changing the return to work guidance for staff who experience high-risk exposures. Several questions have come up in the past few weeks regarding the complexities of the guidance.

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