• Medicare / Medicaid Reform of Requirements for LTC Facilities: CMS Final Rule (9/16)

    By CMS - September 28, 2016

    CMS finalizes improvements in care, safety, and consumer protections for long-term care facility residents. Revisions mark first major rewrite of the conditions of participation (CoP) for long-term care facilities since 1991.

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  • SNF QRP: Requirements for FY 2018 Reporting Year Fact Sheet - UPDATED (9/16)

    By CMS - September 27, 2016
    A “SNF QRP: Requirements for the FY 2018 Reporting Year” Fact Sheet is now available. This fact sheet contains information about requirements for the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Quality Reporting Program (QRP) for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 reporting year (data collection period 10/1/16- 12/31/16). Updated in September 2016
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  • Section GG Data Collection TooI II

    By AANAC - September 22, 2016
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  • Five Star Preview Reports Available Now; Help Line Open 9/26 - 30

    By QTSO - September 21, 2016

    The Five Star Preview Reports will be available on September 20th. To access these reports, select the CASPER Reporting link located on the CMS QIES Systems for Providers page. Once in the CASPER Reporting system, select the 'Folders' button and access the Five Star Report in your 'st LTC facid' folder, where st is the 2-character postal code of the state in which your facility is located and facid is the state-assigned Facility ID of your facility. Nursing Home Compare will update with August's Five Star data on September 28, 2016.

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  • CMS Cautions Providers Against Overuse of Unplanned Discharges

    By Caralyn Davis, Staff Writer - September 20, 2016

    Effective Oct. 1, a Part A PPS Discharge assessment—and of course discharge Section GG (Functional Abilities and Goals)—must be completed “when a resident’s Medicare Part A stay ends, but the resident remains in the facility,” according to page 2-44 of the finalized v1.14 RAI User’s Manual for the MDS 3.0. If that resident is instead discharged from the facility, the existing OBRA rules kick in. Providers must complete either an OBRA Discharge-return anticipated or an OBRA Discharge-return not anticipated for the resident, and the OBRA Discharge must be coded either planned (A0310G = 1) or unplanned (A0310G = 2).

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  • 7 Steps to Get Ready for the RAI Changes

    By Caralyn Davis, Staff Writer - September 20, 2016

    Oct. 1 can be a difficult day for new nurse assessment coordinators (NACs) and veterans alike. Preparing to implement the updated MDS 3.0 item sets using the assessment and coding instructions in the finalized v1.14 Long-Term Care Facility Resident Assessment Instrument 3.0 User’s Manual can be a difficult task. Here’s a refresher course on steps NACs can take for long-term success:

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  • ICD-10-CM Code Updates You Need to Know

    By Maria Ward, AHIMA - September 20, 2016
    As would be expected with any system update that was placed in a holding pattern for several years, many changes have come with the first update of the new ICD-10 Clinical Modification (ICD-10-CM). This article will present guideline and code changes that are most often associated with the long-term care setting.
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  • CMS Updates SNF Chapters of the Internet-Only Manual System (9/16)

    By CMS - September 19, 2016

    CMS has added some clarifying language for SNFs in the Medicare General Information, Eligibility, and Entitlement Manual, the Medicare Claims Processing Manual, and the Medicare Benefit Policy Manual.

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  • MDS 3.0 Provider User's Guide Updated, Including Validation Rpt Error Messages (9/16)

    By QIES Technical Support Office - September 19, 2016
    Key information about how to submit MDS files and how to obtain and understand error messages on initial and final validation reports. 
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  • CASPER Reporting User’s Guide for MDS Providers UPDATED (9/16)

    By QTSO - September 19, 2016
    Provides information and instructions pertaining to CASPER Reporting, including accessing Final Validation Reports.
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  • Nursing Home QAPI - CMS Portal UPDATED (9/16)

    By CMS - September 19, 2016

    CMS assistance related to quality assurance and performance improvement (QAPI): Tools, Resources, Adverse Events, Consumer Engagement, and Description and Background.

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  • jRAVEN 1.4.0 Free MDS Software Update (9/16)

    By CMS - September 19, 2016

    CMS has released version 1.4 of the free jRAVEN MDS software.

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  • SNF QRP Training FAQ Document Now Available (9/16)

    By CMS - September 08, 2016

    Provider Training Questions and Feedback on MDS 3.0

    CMS has posted a document that provides responses to some MDS-specific questions that were received during the Skilled Nursing Facility Quality Reporting Program (SNF QRP) training events.

    Topics include:

    • MDS 3.0 Assessments relevant to the SNF QRP
    • Part A PPS Discharge Combinations
    • Section GG, and
    • Pressure Ulcer quality measure (QM)
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  • MDS Coding Tips from CMS QRP Training

    By Caralyn Davis, Staff Writer - September 07, 2016
    With the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) implementing a brand-new MDS section (Section GG) and a brand-new MDS assessment (the Part A PPS Discharge assessment) on Oct. 1, 2016, the finalized v1.14 RAI User’s Manual for the MDS 3.0 will not address all relevant assessment and coding questions, revealed CMS officials at the Aug. 24 Skilled Nursing Facility Quality Reporting Program (SNF QRP) training session near Chicago. 
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  • Best Practices and Pitfalls of Interviewing for Pain

    By Jessica Kunkler, MA, Staff Writer - September 07, 2016

    Residents are generally comfortable with questions about their pain because they are asked about it frequently—in the hospital, in home health settings, and elsewhere, according to Maureen McCarthy, RN, BS, RAC-MT. However, asking the right questions to get to the bottom of a resident’s pain can be tough. The MDS Pain Assessment required for section J is a tool that asks probing questions. Here are some things to look out for and tips for interviewing with section J most effectively.

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