On Monday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed the FY 2024 Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Payment Prospective Systems (PPS) rates. It includes an increase of 3.7%, or $1.2 billion in Medicare Part A payments to SNFs.
The rate increase reflects a 6.1% market basket update to the payment rates comprised of a 2.7% SNF market basket increase and a 3.6% market basket forecast error adjustment and a decrease of 2.3% related to the result of the second phase of the Patient Driven Payment Model (PDPM) parity adjustment recalibration. According to Skilled Nursing News, the American Health Care Association supported the increase. From AHCA President and CEO Mark Parkinson:
We appreciate that CMS has considered the soaring costs nursing home providers are grappling with due to the labor crisis and record inflation in recent years. It is vital that Medicare reflect the increasing costs — including those imposed by government mandates — nursing homes are facing to ensure our vulnerable residents can access the care they need.
CMS didn’t release an update on its study on minimum staffing requirements for nursing homes or announce any specific staffing requirement rules that would go into effect in 2023. Instead, the agency said that it would continue to review feedback, which would inform later proposals.
AHCA and the American Hospital Association (AHA) sent a joint letter to Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure to discourage CMS from putting such requirements into effect in the near future. From an AHA press release:
Rather than a one-size-fits-all mandate, AHA and AHCA are requesting that the Biden Administration and Congress focus on investing in recruitment and retention programs that will bolster the health care workforce.
An article in Health Affairs this week dissects the flaws in the nursing home industry that were laid bare by the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, the article suggests an overhaul that would refocus the industry on smaller, “household-driven models.”
The full FY 2024 SNF PPS proposed rule can be found in full at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
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