Category: Preparation

Skilled Nursing and Documentation Challenges During COVID-19

Today, long-term care expert Maureen McCarthy, RN, BS, RAC-MT, CQP, president of Celtic Consulting, LLC., discusses how nurses can recognize when the care they are providing is skilled and how COVID-19 impacts skilled care and documentation. We also dive into lessons learned from northeast facilities as COVID cases rise in the other parts of the […]

CMS issues blanket waivers for several states impacted by Hurricane Dorian

CMS has issued blanket waivers in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Puerto Rico. The blanket waiver applies to home health agencies and is designed to provided relief on OASIS transmission timelines. To ensure accurate processing of home health disaster-related claims, Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) can extend autocancellation dates of Requests for Anticipated Payment (RAPs), CMS states. Related links: […]

Updates to Appendix Z includes clarification on emergency preparedness and home health citations

In a memo from CMS dated February 1, 2019, the agency announced updates to Appendix Z of the State Operations Manual to reflect changes to the definition of an all-hazards approach to emergency preparedness, new home health agency citations, and clarifications under alternative source power and emergency standby systems. Updates include the following: CMS is […]

Florida Governor warns that SNFs and ALFs have “no excuse” if caught unprepared for Hurricane Michael

Last year, Hurricane Irma knocked out power to a nursing home in Hollywood, Florida. Without a functioning generator, 14 residents died. According to CBS News, Gov. Rick Scott is warning facilities to prepare in order to avoid a similar tragedy: “If you’re responsible for a patient, you’re responsible for the patient. Take care of them,” […]

Top 10 F-Tag citations in long-term care

According to Harmony Healthcare, the top 10 F-Tags in the January 2018 CASPER are the following. This list is based on standard surveys of nursing homes, and does not include complaint or special focus surveys. For help on survey compliance and citation avoidance, check out Survey Success for Long-Term Care: Reducing Citation Risk. Top 10 […]

Could working within your umbrella organization help with emergency prep?

by: A.J. Plunkett   The following is an excerpt from Home Health Line. If your agency is part of a health care system, there are many benefits to choosing to work with the umbrella organization as you attempt to comply with CMS’ new emergency preparedness requirements. Even if your agency has a separate Medicare certification […]

Seniors among most vulnerable during Hurricane Harvey

The following is from Home Health Line. For more news and information on home health and hospice, visit As Hurricane Harvey hit Texas and the flood waters rose, vulnerable seniors were among those most in need of help. Images of nursing home residents in Dickinson, Texas stranded in flood waters were widely circulated during […]

Update your complaint process: New CoP requires investigation, documentation

The following is from Home Health Line. For more news and information on home health and hospice, visit Agencies should educate staff and patients now to ensure compliance with new complaint process expectations outlined in the revised Home Health Conditions of Participation (CoPs). There’s plenty of work to do between training and tweaking certain […]

Some information on new survey process shared, more guidance to be released soon

Several aspects of the new survey process being rolled out in Phase 2 of the revision to Requirements of Participation were discussed this week at the American Association of Directors of Nursing Services conference in Leesburg, VA. Evan Shulman, CMS Deputy Director in the Division of Nursing Homes, Survey and Certification Group, also promised that […]

Experts share concerns regarding emergency preparedness requirements

Several emergency preparedness experts shared their concerns regarding providers’ ability to meet compliance with emergency preparedness (EP) requirements during a May 17 interview with Modern Healthcare’s Steven Ross Johnson. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) published the final rule on September 16, 2016, mandating that facilities—including skilled nursing facilities, nursing homes, home health […]