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 SNFs To See Slight Increase In Medicare Payments

​Skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) will see a slight increase to their Medicare payments under new guidelines published by the Obama administration.
Obama Administration Medicare
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a notice late Friday updating the SNF Prospective Payment System (PPS) for fiscal year 2013. Overall, Medicare payments will increase by 1.8 percent for SNFs.

CMS estimates that net Medicare Part A payments to SNFs will increase by about $670 million over the year.

The complicated math boils down to a 2.5 percent increase for the market basket and a 0.7 percent decrease for a productivity adjustment.

The update, which would take effect Oct. 1, was expected, but was “still welcome news,” American Health Care Association President and chief executive officer Gov. Mark Parkinson said in a statement Friday.

“Skilled nursing facilities have already been hit too many times over recent years through government reductions, including last year’s devastating SNF PPS rule,” Parkinson said. “Any additional cuts could be devastating to many facilities all over the country and threaten our ability to provide quality care to our residents.”

For all of the good news, the future of the long term and post-acute care profession “remains at risk,” Parkinson said.

“While CMS appears to have understood the current state of the profession, Congress will continue to indiscriminately hunt for pay-fors, and we, like all other providers, are in its sights,”
Parkinson said. “We must remain vigilant that any additional reductions to skilled nursing facilities are not the answer.”

Parkinson took that message to a meeting of the Democratic Governors Association over the weekend.

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