Issue: April 13, 2020

Published on April 13, 2020

Articles in this issue:

CMS Issues FY 2021 Proposed Payment Rule

Author: Carl J. Pucci* Published in Finance & Reimbursement

CMS has issued its SNF Prospective Payment System (PPS) Proposed Rule for fiscal year 2021. 

The proposed rule incudes a net market basket increase of 2.3%, which approximates $784M nationwide. The increases, upon final approval, would be effective 10/1/20. 

Below is the AHCA announcement which contains a detailed summary of the proposed rule. 

From The Reimbursement Policy Team

CMS Issues FY 2021 SNF Proposed Payment Rule 

Dear AHCA Member:

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) today issued the proposed rule for the skilled nursing facility (SNF) prospective payment system (PPS) fiscal year (FY) 2021 update. 

We’re pleased to report that the proposed rule includes a net market basket increase of 2.3 percent. CMS estimates that the net market basket update would increase Medicare SNF payments by approximately $784 million in FY 2021. 

In regard to PDPM monitoring, CMS indicates the Agency will continue to monitor the impact of PDPM implementation on patient outcomes and program outlays.  CMS notes that it would be premature to release any information related to these issues based on the amount of data currently available.” 

Finally, of note, as part of updating CBSAs, CMS is capping decreased in wage indices at 5 percent to prevent precipitous drops.  

The team at AHCA team has developed a summary of the payment updates, the SNF value-based purchasing program, and the IMPACT Act quality reporting additions. 

We appreciate your continued support, especially during this challenging time. Please do not hesitate to reach me directly with any questions or comments.  

Sincerely,

Michael W Cheek
Senior Vice President
Reimbursement Policy
AHCA/NCAL

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Carl J. Pucci
Chief Financial Officer
518-462-4800 x36

Nursing Home COVID-19 Fiscal Survey Extension

Author: Carl Pucci

NYSHFA and the other stateside Associations are extending the Fiscal Cost Survey until this Friday, April 17, 2020.  Please make every effort to submit your facilities’ cost data to enable NYSHFA to effectively advocate DOH for needed financial relief. Below is the link to Survey Monkey. 

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NH-COVID-19

We appreciate your efforts to respond during this very difficult period.

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACT:

Carl J. Pucci
Chief Financial Officer
518-462-4800 x36

Nursing Home COVID19 Updates Conference Call: Tuesday, April 14th at 2:00 pm

Author: Nancy Leveille and Jackie Pappalardi* Published in Clinical & Quality

DOH is providing an Audio Conference: Nursing Home COVID19 Updates

Tuesday, April 14, 2020 at 2PM

Phone Number for participants:  (844) 512-2950 

This audio conference will have no open lines.  Questions may be submitted via email to covidnursinghomeinfo@health.ny.gov


NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

You are invited to CMS Office Hours on COVID-19, Tuesday, April 14th at 5:00 pm

Author: Jackie Pappalardi and Nancy Leveille* Published in Clinical & Quality

You are invited to CMS “Office Hours” on COVID-19, Tuesday, April 14th from 5:00 – 6:00 PM EST, the next in a series of opportunities for hospitals, health systems, and providers to ask questions of agency officials regarding CMS’s temporary actions that empower local hospitals and healthcare systems to:

Dial-in details below. Conference lines are limited, so we highly encourage you to join via audio webcast, either on your computer or smartphone web browser. You are welcome to share this invitation with your colleagues and membership.

Toll-Free Attendee Dial In: 833-614-0820

Event Plus Passcode: 2395745

Audio Webcast link: https://protect2.fireeye.com/url?k=4a55f7e3-1601ee9f-4a55c6dc-0cc47adc5fa2-6960b048d70ddb8c&u=https://protect2.fireeye.com/url?k=bb0ee1a3-e75ac888-bb0ed09c-0cc47a6d17cc-633c7d24779f39dc&u=https://engage.vevent.com/rt/cms2/index.jsp?seid=1883

You can find a copy of the full press release and related materials here:  https://www.cms.gov/newsroom/press-releases/trump-administration-makes-sweeping-regulatory-changes-help-us-healthcare-system-address-covid-19


NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20

AHCA: COVID-19 Update #39 - New OSHA Resources

Author: Nancy Leveille and Jackie Pappalardi* Published in Clinical & Quality

In This COVID-19 Update:

New OSHA Resources: Low/Unavailable PPE and Reporting Staff Cases 

AHCA/NCAL released four new resources on guidance from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) on critically low or unavailable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). These new resources are applicable to all long term care providers.  


Today, CMS released detailed guidance on long term care facility transfers. This matches the cohorting guidance that AHCA/NCAL shared with you previously. 

All nursing homes and assisted living communities should make plans for cohorting residents even before COVID-19 enters the building. Cohorting is imperative to help control the spread of the virus. If possible, nursing homes and assisted living communities should also begin preparing wings, units or floors as “isolation units”. Isolation unit should be a separate, well-ventilated area, ideally with a separate entrance.

National Emerging Special Pathogens Training and Education Center (NETEC) COVID-19 Webinar Series  

In this webinar series, NETEC is providing facilities with the tools to educate health care workers and share preparedness best practices. NETEC will highlight subject matter experts who have been immersed in the many challenges and topics around COVID-19. 

Telemedicine Innovations
Monday, April 13, 2020 | 1:00 PM CDT 
Emory Healthcare has rapidly increased telemedicine on the outpatient and inpatient sides in response to the Covid Crisis. Learn about their approach before and during COVID, and they'll discuss possible post COVID scenarios.
Look for the recording soon to be available

Healthcare Workers and Masks 
Friday, April 17, 2020 | 11:00 AM CDT 
The what, how and why of masks for healthcare workers caring for patients during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Register 

All previous recordings and upcoming events can be found here.

Update: CMS Revises COVID-19 FAQs on FFS Billing 

CMS posted an updated version of their COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) Billing document.  A change date is provided below each answer to indicate new and updated answers. The document is largely a repackaging of existing CMS guidance.   

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20 

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

Audio Conference: Environmental Services Best Practices and Helpful Tips - April 15

Author: Jackie Pappalardi* Published in Clinical & Quality

Environmental Services Best Practices and Helpful Tips

Audio: April 15, 2020

2:00 pm – 2:30 pm 

In today’s pandemic Environmental Services plays a huge roll in prevention. Please join us on Wednesday, April 15th at 2:00 pm for the Environmental Services Best Practices and Helpful Tips Audio Conference and share best practices for Environmental Services in your programs. Jesse Cash, Regional Director of Operations with Morrison Living will use his 15+ years of Environmental and Plant Operations to discuss the importance of Environmental services during this pandemic. He has used his expertise to ensure a consistent, high quality outcome from teams he supports in senior living. With a focus metrics-based housekeeping, Jesse’s specialties lie in program implementation, policy and procedure design based on best practices and cutting edge technology. If you have any specific questions regarding Environmental Services please email them to mspock@nyshfa.org so that they can be addressed in the audio. Call in number 1-800-220-9875; Participant Code: 14227658#.

2019 Nursing Home Quality Initiative Results for Feedback: DUE May 1st

Author: Nancy Leveille and Jackie Pappalardi* Published in Clinical & Quality

DOH is releasing the 2019 Nursing Home Quality Initiative (NHQI) results for feedback early this week. The deadline to provide feedback is May 01, 2020. Nursing Homes will be notified through Health Commerce System (HCS). You must review your data during this period and if you find any errors contact them directly before May 1, 2020. See attached for full details.

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

AHCA/NCAL: COVID-19 Testing and Vendors

Author: Nancy Leveille* Published in Clinical & Quality

AHCA/NCAL held a meeting today to discuss that COVID-19 testing continues to be a significant point of concern for LTC providers. AHCA/NCAL has put together a couple of resources around testing that they want to make sure you are aware of:

For members seeking testing from new lab vendors, AHCA/NCAL would recommend the following:

  1. Use lab that will bill Medicare directly for Part B
  2. Test residents before skilling  

If you have any additional questions, please contact them at COVID19@ahca.org.

DOH: COVID-19 Drug Topics

Author: Jackie Pappalardi and Lisa Volk* Published in Clinical & Quality

The Department of Health today issued COVID-19 Drug Topics, which provides prescribers with an evidence-based, non-commercial source of the latest objective information about pharmaceuticals. The information is provided through our Prescriber Education Program (PEP), which is a partnership between the Department of Health and the State University of New York (SUNY) Medical and Pharmacy institutions.

Information regarding Colchicine, Hydroxychloroquine and Ibuprofen is now available on the COVID-19 Guidance for Medicaid Providers webpage.

Medicaid Redesign Team Updates
Office of Health Insurance Programs
New York State Department of Health
Albany, NY 12237
mrtupdates@health.ny.gov 

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20

NYSHealth Commits $2 Million for COVID-19 Response Efforts

Author: Nancy Leveille and Jackie Pappalardi* Published in Clinical & Quality

NYSHFA/NYSCAL and the Foundation for Quality Care (FQC) are happy to share that the NYSHealth Foundation is establishing grants across NYS to assist with the COVID-19 crisis. They have provided two generous grants to FQC over the last 10 years. See below information.

The New York State Health Foundation (NYSHealth) has committed $2 million in funding to support COVID-19 response and relief efforts throughout New York State. Grants will include contributions to numerous regional response funds as well as support for statewide and local efforts to address emerging health care and public health needs in the wake of the pandemic.

Learn more

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

Use of non-congregate sheltering by various state, local and private non-profits for FEMA approved populations in relation to COVID-19

Author: Nancy Leveille and Jackie Pappalardi* Published in Clinical & Quality

NYSHFA/NYSCAL received the following advisory from the Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services:

On March 20, 2020, the State of New York received a major disaster declaration (DR-4480) to provide emergency protective measures (Category B) under the Public Assistance (PA) program through the disaster declaration. On April 9, 2020, FEMA approved New York's statewide plan for non-congregate sheltering. This approval allows governmental entities and private non-profits (PNPs) to utilize hotel and motel rooms as non-congregate sheltering for certain defined populations. The costs associated with non-congregate sheltering conforming to New York's approved plan would be eligible for partial reimbursement under FEMA's Public Assistance program. A slide deck outlining the State's non-congregate sheltering plan and FEMA's requirements for applicants to implement that plan is attached.

New York's statewide NCS plan identifies 3 target populations for non-congregate sheltering:

Please note that New York City received approval for a citywide non-congregate sheltering plan on March 30, 2020. The statewide non-congregate sheltering plan differs slightly from the citywide plan in terms of populations identified. FEMA will allow entities in NYC to utilize the statewide plan if they wish to include those additional populations approved in the State plan.

The Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services( DHSES) will be including this information in our upcoming applicant's briefings and will post it to our website at: http://www.dhses.ny.gov/recovery/public/active-declarations.cfm under DR-4480. Note that DHSES continues to work with FEMA on implementation guidance under this program and additional information will be shared as it becomes known.

Please don't hesitate to reach out to my team via our dedicated COVID-19 email address: dhsespaCOVID-19@dhses.ny.gov

J. Andrew Martin, CFM
Public Assistance Chief
NYS Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Services
1220 Washington Avenue - Bldg. 7A, Albany, NY 12242
(518) 242-5133 | (518) 598-7290 (cell)  
andrew.martin@dhses.ny.gov
www.dhses.ny.gov


NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Director, Special Projects and Educational Development
518-462-4800 x20

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

2020 Nursing Scholarship Program Accepting Applications

Author:

Once again we are pleased to announce the Foundation for Quality Care Nursing Scholarship Program. The Foundation for Quality Care, the research and education affiliate of the New York State Health Facilities Association/New York State Center for Assisted Living (NYSHFA/NYSCAL), will administer the Ruth E. Stafford and James D. Durante Nursing Scholarship Program for 2020. This Scholarship Fund Program has been established to provide financial support to incumbent employees of NYSHFA/NYSCAL member facilities who are also nursing students pursuing careers in long term care. The Durante/Stafford Scholarships will now be awarded to students/nurses in three categories:

Skilled Nursing

Category I:  Students pursuing licenses as a practical nurse or registered nurse.  Two scholarships for $2,000 each are available for the Category I Scholarship.

Category II:  Registered nurses pursuing advanced degrees in nursing (Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate, Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Specialist).  Two scholarships for $2,000 each are available for the Category II Scholarship.

Assisted Living

Students pursuing licenses as a practical nurse or registered nurse.  One scholarship for $2,000 is available.

The winners will be selected by NYSHFA’s Nurse Leadership Advisory Committee and awarded their Scholarship at the Annual Nurse Leadership Conference on Thursday, September 17, 2020 in Verona, New York.

Scholarship Criteria and Submission Information:
Attached are the Scholarship Brochure and Application and Recommendation Forms. At the time of application, and when the scholarships are awarded, applicants must be employed by a long term care facility that is a member in good standing of the New York State Health Facilities Association/New York State Center for Assisted Living. Applicants must be applying to or enrolled in / accepted to an accredited school of nursing program for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Applications are due by April 30, 2020.

If you have questions regarding this program, please contact Joanne O'Connor at the Foundation.

NYSHFA/NYSCAL CONTACTS:

Jackie Pappalardi, RN, BSN
Executive Director
518-462-4800 x16

Joanne O'Connor
Communications & Business Development Coordinator
518-462-4800 ext. 23