CMS Releases SNF PPS Final Rule for 2012

MacKenzie Kimball, for HealthLeaders Media , August 2, 2011

Along with the payment updates, the SNF PPS Final Rule for 2012 includes a few other significant changes for nursing facilities. Some of these changes are as follows:

  • Affordable Care Act initiatives:
    • CMS is in the process of developing the SNF value based purchasing plan and will submit a report to Congress by October 1, 2011.
    • The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will evaluate the possibility of expanding the hospital-acquired condition policy from acute care hospitals to a variety of other settings, including SNFs, and will submit a report to Congress by January 1, 2012.
    • Nursing home transparency and improvement. This will require SNFs to report expenditures separately for direct care staff wages and benefits on the Medicare cost report, for cost reporting periods beginning on or after two years after enactment, and also requires the Secretary of HHS to perform certain related activities.
  • Therapy student supervision: The Final Rule will discontinue the policy requiring lineof-sight supervision of therapy students in SNFs. Instead, effective October 1, 2011, each SNF will determine for itself the appropriate manner of supervision of therapy students consistent with state and local laws and practice standards.
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