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Nursing Homes To Face Medicare Pay Cut

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services finalized an 11 percent drop in nursing home payments, which will kick in next year.
The Hill: Medicare Cuts Payments To Nursing Homes
Nursing homes will see a double-digit drop in their Medicare payments next year. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on Friday finalized an 11 percent cut in payments to nursing homes. CMS proposed the cut in April, saying Medicare made unexpected extra payments under a new classification system and that a cut is needed in order to recapture that money (Baker, 7/29).
Modern Healthcare: CMS To Cut Skilled-Nursing Facility Pay
The CMS announced in a final rule that it will cut Medicare skilled-nursing facility pay by 11.1 percent, or $3.87 billion, in fiscal 2012, a move strongly opposed by the SNF industry. The CMS cut the payments to claw back estimated increased reimbursement in the current fiscal year that resulted from unintended changes in SNF Medicare billing for therapy, which had followed changes in how Medicare paid for therapy (Barr, 7/29).
CQ HealthBeat: CMS Payment Regs Include 11 Percent Cut to Skilled Nursing Facilities
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued final regulations late Friday governing payments to inpatient rehabilitation facilities, hospice programs and skilled nursing facilities — including an 11 percent cut to «SNFs» that industry officials say is unjustifiably harsh. «This is really unprecedented in CMS history to cut one provider group this much,» said Lauren Shaham, communications VP for LeadingAge, the lobby that represents nonprofit nursing facilities. «Their immediate reduction to skilled nursing facilities now puts more than 100,000 health care jobs at risk, as well as our ability to provide quality care to our nation’s seniors,» added Mark Parkinson, CEO of the American Health Care Association, which represents the nursing home industry as a whole (Reichard, 7/29).
Bloomberg: Nursing Homes’ Lost Lobbying Fight To Cost Industry $3.87 Billion in 2012
U.S. nursing homes’ lost lobbying battle with Medicare will cost the industry $3.87 billion, as the health program tries to recover overpayments it says it made to companies such as Kindred Healthcare Inc. and Sun Healthcare Group Inc. The 11.1 percent Medicare rate cut for next year is meant to stop overbilling by for-profit homes including Sun, Kindred, and Skilled Healthcare Group Inc. The change follows Medicare’s finding that, under a new payment system put in place this year, the companies drove up reimbursements for patients (Armstrong, 7/30).
The Boston Globe: Nursing Home Residents Risk Losing Bed
Massachusetts nursing home residents who are briefly hospitalized or leave to visit their family risk losing their bed under a state funding cut finalized yesterday that illustrates the tough choices confronting state government in an era of tight budgets. Advocates for the elderly and disabled worked feverishly for a last-minute reprieve, but the state’s Medicaid director said he had few options. … Federal law requires nursing homes to readmit a resident after a temporary leave to the first available bed in a shared room, but it does not guarantee the same room or bed as before (Lazar.

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