The Massachusetts’ medical parole law became effective on April 13, 2018. With the passage of the medical parole law, Massachusetts joined the majority of other states in having a procedure to release prisoners who are too ill to present a safety risk to the public. The Prisoners’ Legal Services of Massachusetts has provided the following background memo in regard to the Massachusetts Medical Parole Law.
The Legislature last evening adopted and sent to Governor Baker a FY2019 supplemental appropriation bill, which includes $10 million to restore funding for 170 nursing facilities which saw rate cuts of up to $2.80/day, as a result of a fundamental redesign of MassHealth’s longstanding capital reimbursement methodology. MSCA President Tara Gregorio praised the Legislature for its action to use surplus funds to help support vital services for the Commonwealth’s frail elders.
The Joint Committee on Elder Affairs, chaired by Representative Ruth Balser (D-Newton) and Senator Patricia Jehlen (D-Somerville), recently gave a favorable report to House Bill 619, “An Act Relative to Promoting Innovation in Eldercare Services,” filed by House Majority Leader Ronald Mariano (D-Quincy). Mass Senior Care supports a zero-interest loan program for providers seeking to convert skilled nursing facilities to other important housing and long term care services and supports. A significant barrier for such projects is the lack of available financing.
Mass Senior Care is pleased to welcome new members to our Association. Our Associate Members have demonstrated their commitment to the senior care provider community by joining Mass Senior Care and participating as exhibitors and sponsors for events and educational conferences. Mass Senior Care members are encouraged to contact Associate Members when they are in need of long term care products and services. You can find all of our Associate Members listed on our website, www.maseniorcare.org/preferred-vendors.
Mass Senior Care is pleased to report that the Massachusetts DPH has announced a new initiative to encourage long term care facilities to achieve a goal of 90% flu vaccination rate for all health care personnel. DPH will reimburse the calendar year 2020 and 2021 licensure renewal fee for long term care facilities that meet this 90% vaccination rate and successfully complete the required reporting to the Department by the April 15, 2020 deadline.
The third meeting of the legislatively mandated Nursing Facility Task Force was held Friday, November 22nd, and focused on the CHIA Nursing Facility Industry Report covering the period 2013-2017. The Task Force is required to submit its report to the legislature, including any proposed legislation necessary to carry out its recommendations, not later than February 1, 2020.
On November 22, 2019, CMS released a memo entitled "Updates and Initiatives to Ensure Safety and Quality in Nursing Homes." The memo includes updates and announcements on several including Phase 3 Interpretive Guidance, Arbitration Agreements, Infection Prevention and Control and New Toolkit on Employee Satisfaction.
Due to the overall decrease of Tuberculosis cases and low incidence of TB among Health Care Personnel due to occupational exposure, routine practice of annual testing is no longer recommended for HCP. The recommendations for facility risk assessments and infection control practices did not change from the 2005 guidelines.
Mass Senior Care's 2019 Annual Meeting & Trade Show event was a great success. Tara Gregorio, President of Mass Senior Care highlighted the success of advocacy efforts which resulted in a $66 million increase for nursing home care.
Massachusetts Senior Care Association is a proud partner organization of The Massachusetts Healthcare Safety and Quality Consortium which brings together the state’s health care community — providers, payers, patients, government agencies, and other policymakers and experts — to accelerate safety and quality improvement statewide.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) last week issued a proposed Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Regulation that would impact provider assessments and upper payment limit (UPL) programs.
Earlier this year, EOHHS established a new grant program for eligible MassHealth providers to fund efforts to improve access to health care services for individuals with disabilities or for whom English is not a primary language.
The American Health Care Association (AHCA) has provided the following PDPM Claims Payment Update: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) informed AHCA that all Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) claims, including multiple Health Insurance Prospective Payment System (HIPPS) code claims, will now process. Members should submit all claims as quickly as possible to start the 14-day floor claims process.
Massachusetts Senior Care Association is a proud partner organization of The Massachusetts Healthcare Safety and Quality Consortium which brings together the state’s health care community — providers, payers, patients, government agencies, and other policymakers and experts — to accelerate safety and quality improvement statewide. The consortium led by the Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety was formed after a study found 62,000 preventable harm events in Massachusetts in 2017. The goal of the consortium is to create a Roadmap to
The Legislature continues to deliberate on the $700 million FY 2019 year end supplemental budget, which includes $10 million to restore funding for 170 nursing facilities which saw rate cuts of up to $2.80 per day, as a result of an abrupt and fundamental redesign of MassHealth’s longstanding capital reimbursement methodology.
Mass Senior Care last Friday presented testimony on EOHHS’ $56 million nursing facility rate regulation. At the public hearing, Chief Operating Officer Gary Abrahams noted that the October 1 regulation implemented the legislatively-required $50 million rate increase, which is necessary to begin to help stabilize the nursing facility sector.
The Bureau of Health Care Safety and Quality has released a Circular Letter providing clarification on the use of the term “ambulatory” in the definition of rest home in 105 CMR 150.000 Standards for Long-Term Care Facilities
Due to technical difficulties with the Quality Award Portal, the American Health Care Association is extending the AHCA/NCAL National Quality Award Intent to Apply (ITA) deadline to Thursday, November 21st. Submissions must be received before 8 pm ET on November 21st.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on November 1st announced via a Federal Register notice that it is extending the validity of TPS-related documentation for beneficiaries under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designations for El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua and Sudan through January 4, 2021.
Mass Senior Care invites staff at member facilities to participate in various committees designed to share information on the topics of clinical quality, regulatory, human resources and finance and reimbursement.
The US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) has released its updated list which reflects all OIG exclusions and reinstatement actions up to, and including, those taken in October 2019. This new file is meant to replace the updated List of Excluded Individuals/Entities (LEIE) database file available for download last month. Individuals and entities that have been reinstated to the federal health care programs are not included in this file.
The submission deadline for the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Quality Reporting Program (QRP) has been extended to November 18, 2019. Assessment data SNFs submitted April 1 – June 30 (Q2) of calendar year (CY) 2019 are due with this deadline.
Mass Senior Care will present testimony on EOHHS $56 million nursing facility rate regulation at tomorrow’s public hearing. Mass Senior Care is grateful that the October 1 regulation implements the legislatively-required $50 million rate increase designed to begin to help stabilize the nursing home sector.
Legislation impacting long term care facilities was heard at the October 29th Joint Committee on Elder Affairs hearing. Representative Denise Garlick (D-Needham) presented oral remarks on her bill, House Bill 609, An Act Relative to Promoting the Betterment of Resident’s Health and Safety in Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Facilities
Life Care Centers of America recently honored Ted Eliopoulos, Director of Business Development, upon his retirement. Ted has worked in long term care for over 25 years and throughout his tenure has been an active member of Mass Senior Care Association. We extend our best wishes to Ted!
The Intent to Apply (ITA) for the 2020 AHCA/NCAL National Quality Award application cycle application cycle is closing soon! The deadline to submit an ITA is November 7, 2019. AHCA/NCAL encourages you to submit an ITA through the Quality Award Portal here before the deadline. For more information about the AHCA/NCAL National Quality Award Program and the benefits of submitting an ITA, please visit ahcancal.org/qualityaward.
Staffing data from July 1st through September 30th must be submitted no later than 45 days from the end of the quarter. The final submission deadline for this quarter is November 14th, 2019. Only data successfully submitted by the deadline is considered timely and used on the Nursing Home Compare website and in the five star rating calculations. Once a facility uploads their data file, they need to check their final Validation Report, which can be accessed in the Certification
The Senate Committee on Ways and Means earlier this week proposed its FY2019 deficiency appropriation bill, which includes $10 million to restore funding for 170 nursing facilities which saw rate cuts of up to $2.80/day.
The 2nd meeting of the legislatively mandated Nursing Home Task Force was held last Friday, October 18, and focused on Medicaid reimbursement and Labor and Workforce issues. Separate presentations were made by: Assistant Secretary for MassHealth Daniel Tsai, MSCA President Tara Gregorio and Jennifer James, Undersecretary, Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.
Please join Mass Senior Care, NALCO Water, An Ecolab Company and the Department of Public Health on October 31, 2019 at 1:00 pm for a webinar on Legionnaires’ Disease: What’s New, What’s True and What to Do.
Massachusetts Bronze and Silver Quality Award recipients were recognized at the AHCA/NCAL Annual Convention in Orlando. Mass Senior Care congratulates the following member facilities for their achievement and dedication to performance excellence.
EOHHS has indicated that it will postal mail to facilities their October 1 Medicaid 2020 rate certification letters at the end of this week, with receipt expected by the Monday, October 28th. For any questions about rate certification letters, providers should contact CHIA’s LTC call center via email at CHIAcostreports.LTCF@State.MA.US or by phone at 617-701-8297. As noted in Mass Senior Care Association’s earlier communication to members, the new rate regulation is a $56 million package, including implementation of the FY