Think Local: StarPRO’s new Local Market Rating

Healthcare is Local Whether seeking long-term care or rehabbing after surgery, patients typically seek care close to home.  But if there’s more than one option, how do they choose? Hospital discharge planners are required to provide a list of local facilities (and their CMS star ratings) to choose from. Patients are advised to visit the facility (or […]

StarPRO August Updates: Slick New Survey Features

Source: CMS Often, things slow down during summer, but we’ve been busy with CMS updates, FY2022 PPS rulings and new StarPRO features. Read on for more. CMS Issues FY2022 PPS Final Rule Late last month, CMS issued the 290-page document (here’s a mercifully shorter summary from CMS) that outlines next year’s Medicare payment plan, as […]

Average Star Rating Graph
Fixes for the “Broken” Nursing Home Star Ratings Part 3: Quality

Source: CMS Welcome to the third installment of our four-part series on improving the CMS Five-Star rating system for nursing homes.  This month, we move from Staffing to Quality, the last of the three domains.    Why Is Quality Last? The fact that Quality is last is the perfect way to start.  Isn’t in strange […]

Fixes for the “Broken” Nursing Home Star Ratings Part 2: Staffing

Source: CMS Welcome to the second installment of our four-part series on how the CMS Five-Star rating system for Nursing Homes can be improved.  Last month we covered the Survey domain and this month, we’re turning our focus to Staffing. From the perspective of the operator or administrator, staffing represents a constant battle.  On one […]

Infection Control Deficiencies Showing Outsized Impact on Survey Star Rating

Source: CMS As we reported in December, CMS recently announced that the results of Focused Infection Control Surveys (FICs) conducted during the pandemic would be included in the Health Inspection (Survey) domain of the Five-Star program for Nursing Home ratings. This reversed course from a previous statement that these deficiencies would not contribute to Five […]

Survey and Quality to be Unfrozen, Infection Surveys Included

Source: CMS The Thaw Continues According to their memo on December 4th, CMS will resume calculation of the Health Inspection (Survey) and Quality domains of the Five-Star Rating system for Skilled Nursing Facilities as of January 27, 2021. This continues the trend started last month with an end to the one-quarter “freeze” of the Staffing […]

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 […]