The ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has created many challenges for long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) providers. One of the most pressing is ensuring timely and safe (i.e., low-risk for infection) visits between practitioners and patients. Increasingly, telehealth – i.e., the delivery of health-related services and information via electronic information and telecommunications technology – is being used as a primary means to achieve this. In part, this has occurred due to recent regulatory changes that expanded telehealth’s role in caring for Medicare patients across the health care continuum.
Skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), senior care facilities and long-term care facilities come in all shapes and sizes, but they all have a common goal: optimizing resident care and enhancing outcomes. Achieving this is no easy feat—it takes skill, planning, foresight and execution in many areas, including revenue cycle management, accounting and finance, Medicare compliance, EHR implementation and ongoing usage and more.
As part of a long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) facility’s regular risk assessment, leadership and staff should collaboratively develop written emergency preparedness plans to prepare for and respond to an array of disasters and crises—including epidemics and/or pandemics.
Enter the coronavirus (COVID-19), which has rocked the LTPAC landscape during 2020. While its effects are wide-ranging and profound, COVID-19 has exposed a particularly glaring hole in many facilities’ disaster preparedness plans: personal protective equipment (PPE).
The year 2020 has undoubtedly put coronavirus (COVID-19) in the spotlight. We are quarantining, self-isolating and wearing facemasks when we venture out in public. COVID-19 is already proven to be the deadliest virus humans have encountered since the H1N1 influenza pandemic of 1918. Accordingly, medical and public health professionals have focused considerable efforts and directed resources toward managing its spread.
That said, COVID-19 is only one of many viruses, bacteria, parasites and fungi that could cause an epidemic or pandemic. With the high number of patients who are currently being treated in our hospitals and the overwhelming lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), we could see a marked increase in any one of these—or in multiple human pathogens.
As long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) organizations continue to navigate the ever-changing coronavirus (COVID-19) landscape, the clinical challenges they face are readily apparent. Less publicized, however – yet highly consequential – are the financial impacts of this crisis on LTPAC facilities of every size and scope.
In only a few short months, COVID-19 has put many LTPACs in untenable financial positions as they scramble to meet myriad obligations and ensure adequate cash flow.
The crisis is far from over, and with so much uncertainty, the full scale of its financial impacts may not be fully understood for months—possibly even years. Beyond obvious steps like eliminating nonessential costs, what measures can LTPAC CFOs and controllers take now to promote financial stability as this unprecedented crisis unfolds?
Market opportunities continue to expand for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), senior care facilities and long-term care facilities around the U.S. as more and more baby boomers seek residence and care. Yet, increasing numbers of residents means added pressure to meet Medicaid challenges—particularly as Medicaid rules and regulations continually change and evolve.
In order to adequately serve residents and help ensure optimal outcomes while remaining profitable and compliant, it is more important than ever to meet every Medicaid challenge your long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) facility knows about—as well as those you may not be aware of, or don’t fully understand.
Today, more and more LTPACs are turning to outside Medicaid specialists for insights, expertise, training and customized solutions for a variety of Medicaid challenges.
Long-term post-acute care (LTPAC) organizations of all sizes and shapes should be singularly focused on the mission of optimizing patient care and enhancing outcomes. Yet, to pursue this, it’s vital that your organization operate efficiently—and a big part of that entails collecting all revenue owed in a consistent manner.
At Richter, we’ve seen far too many LTPACs suffer the harmful effects of uncollected revenue. As a result, they put themselves at risk for financial instability—and that, in turn, puts their mission at risk.
Topics: long term care consulting services, skilled nursing facility consultants, SNF Consultants, long term revenue cycle management, healthcare revenue cycle management services, revenue cycle billing
In “normal” times, your skilled nursing facility staff should be taking all necessary steps to prevent and control infections throughout the facility. As the current COVID-19 pandemic continues to unfold, it’s safe to say these are anything but normal times.
Fortunately, skilled nursing facilities here in the U.S. up to now haven’t had to deal with major outbreaks beyond seasonal flu. Unfortunately, that has partly caused too many skilled nursing and senior care organizations to overlook basic steps that help prevent and control infections throughout a facility.