Unfrozen Staffing Star Ratings Rise, Defying Expectations

Source: CMS Frozen No More At the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, CMS issued several waivers to help facilities focus on patient care rather than on reporting requirements. In addition to the earlier halt of standard Survey activity, these waivers covered both MDS and PBJ data, resulting in freezes to several of the Star Rating domains. But […]

SNF Trends Report Underlines Correlation Between Star Ratings, Occupancy and Operating Margin

Image credit: CLA Recently, respected advisory firm CliftonLarsonAllen released their latest SNF Cost Comparison and Industry Trends Report.  CLA explores several prevailing themes in an industry besieged by challenges, including issues with decreased liquidity and occupancy, the rise of telehealth, and the continuing importance of PDPM to the bottom line.  But one of the findings […]

Covid-19 and Nursing Homes: Controlling Community Spread

With their high concentrations of vulnerable residents, Nursing Homes are particularly susceptible to outbreaks of Covid-19.  Countless news stories have documented the ravages of the disease among seniors in these facilities, with the death toll registering over 58,000 by the end of September per CMS data.  The effort to safeguard Nursing Home residents has been […]

New Infection Control Fines: Knowing What To Expect

On June 1, CMS outlined the details of the enforcement actions or penalties that can be levied against facilities for their performance on the new Targeted Infection Control Surveys.  We’ve written before about issues with past Infection Control deficiencies and about the new IC Surveys, but now, the two combined can be a significant liability […]

The Freeze Sets In: Minimal CMS Star Rating Changes Due to Covid-19

In our previous posts, we noted that CMS has frozen the Survey Rating and intends to freeze the Staffing Rating and some Quality Measures starting this month.  Let’s take a look at the impact of some of these changes. In a typical, non-frozen month, about 5% of facilities nationwide experience a Survey Rating change.  This […]

Staffing Star Rating and some Quality Measures to be Frozen

On June 25, CMS outlined changes that affect the Staffing and Quality domains of the Five Star Rating system. Staffing First and perhaps most importantly, CMS ended the emergency waiver that allowed facilities to skip reporting their PBJ staffing data. Facilities must now report PBJ data for 2020Q2 by August 14. Second, because the waiver […]

CMS Releases Targeted Infection Control Survey Results

In a memo dated March 23, CMS announced a freeze on standard Survey activity and a requirement for states to focus on Targeted Infection Control Surveys and Complaint Surveys at the Immediate Jeopardy level.  On April 24, another memo outlined that no Survey conducted after March 4 would be used to change a facility’s Survey […]

CMS Releases Nursing Home COVID-19 Data

Since May 8, all Skilled Nursing Facilities have been required to report various COVID-19 related data to the CDC and CMS via the CDC’s website. The data points include: Resident beds and census Suspected and confirmed COVID-19 infections among residents and staff Total deaths and COVID-19 deaths among residents and staff Access to COVID-19 testing […]

April 2020 CMS Updates

CMS released its monthly updates today, and with them, some major changes as a result of Covid-19. Per CMS's memo on March 23rd, most normal Survey activity has...