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HCPro’s 2013 Recovery Auditor Benchmarking Report

This year’s Recovery Auditor Benchmarking Report surveyed 325 respondents, representing both small and large hospitals, from all four Recovery Auditor regions. It may not come as a huge surprise to many that the mean theme of this year’s survey is the expanding state of the Recovery Auditors, and the fact that they continue to gain speed and extend their reach.

This theme becomes apparent almost immediately as we look at the percentage of providers that have had recoupments from automated reviews—it has risen by 14% this year. In addition, the amount of providers that have seen record requests for complex or semi-automated reviews has gone from 82% to 91%. This may not be shocking, as CMS continues to approve more issues and the scope of the RAs continues to expand, but it highlights the fact that the audits are ever-changing and will force providers to stay on their toes.

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National Nursing Assistants Week

The National Network of Career Nursing Assistants announced the theme for the 33rd annual National Nursing Assistants Week, to be held June 10-17. This year, the focus is on “Safe Patient Handling.”

Ask the expert: Beginning skilled therapy

Q: What day should a new admit to a skilled nursing facility begin the skilled therapy that is ordered by a physician if that resident is going to be Medicare Part A secondary to therapy? A:  Most of the time patients have other nursing skilled needs in addition to the therapy.  However, in order to be […]

Court ruling on marketers, non-compete agreements a ‘game changer’ for home care

The Florida Supreme Court has recently determined that home health marketers can’t poach referral sources from their former employers if they previously signed non-compete agreements. The decision is a likely game changer for home care marketers and their employers nationwide, regardless of whether they work for Medicare skilled agencies or private duty companies. The Sept. […]

Highlights from the January 12 ICD-10 call

During the January 12 Preparing for ICD-10 Implementation in 2011 National Provider Teleconference, CMS provided listeners with a wealth of information to help them prepare for the October 1, 2013 implementation of this new coding system.

Lawmakers seek to eliminate manual lifting

Long-Term Living reports that a bill that aims to establish national occupational standards to eliminate manual lifting of patients by healthcare workers is drawing support from the American Nurses Association (ANA). The bill calls for lifting technology to be used instead. The bill, called The Nurse and Health Care Worker Protection Act, pleased ANA’s president, […]

Home Health Compare, other CMS compare tools to be retired Dec. 1

CMS announced that it will retire the original compare tools Dec. 1. Released in early September, Care Compare at Medicare.gov replaces the original compare tools, including Nursing Home Compare, Hospital Compare, and Physician Compare. Care Compare streamlines the eight original health care compare tools and can be used to find and compare health care providers, […]

CMS updates the Medicare physician self-referral law

CMS issued a final rule that aims to modernize and clarify Medicare physician self-referral law, also called “Stark Law” On November 20. Stark Law was first introduced in 1989, and has not been meaningfully updated since. The law aims to protect patients and nursing home residents from physicians pushing services that are in their own […]