American Hospital Association to CMS: Skilled nursing facilities are vital to healthcare — properly reimburse them

The American Hospital Association sent a letter to CMS outlining how vital skilled nursing facilities are to healthcare and urging CMS to make changes to some of its proposals, including the reimbursement amounts.

Hospital-based skilled nursing facilities are facing numerous challenges, including skyrocketing labor and supply costs and labor shortages.

"Therefore, it is vital to the entire healthcare continuum that CMS provide adequate reimbursement and resources to SNFs to help ensure all patients receive timely, appropriate care," the letter said. "As CMS considers how to ensure SNFs are adequately resourced to care for Medicare beneficiaries, we ask that the agency pay special attention to these hospital-based SNFs."

The AHA is concerned that CMS' market basket approach lags behind recognized inflationary trends and does not fully capture the rising cost of care. The organization encouraged CMS to work with stakeholders to update market basket methodology and explore new proxies or alternative data to avoid disruptions to the continuum of care for Medicare beneficiaries.

The letter also urged CMS to reconsider some of its productivity adjustment measures, data collection, discharge score measure, how it measures residents with up-to-date COVID-19 vaccines and its underserved multiplier program.

Read the full letter here.

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