Skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) will see an increase in their Medicare payment rates. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued the final rule for the SNF prospective payment system (PPS) fiscal year (FY) 2021 update.

The final rule includes a net market basket increase of 2.2 percent, one-tenth percent lower than the proposed market basket of 2.3 percent due to updated data reflecting substantial changes in the macroeconomic forecast due to COVID-19. CMS estimates that the net market basket update would increase Medicare SNF payments by approximately $750 million in FY 2021.

Mark Parkinson, president and chief executive officer of the American Health Care Association (AHCA), said, “We applaud CMS for issuing this SNF PPS final rule. Skilled nursing facilities across the nation are working heroically to protect the people who are most vulnerable to the pandemic. That work makes this 2.2 percent market basket update increasingly important.”

CMS issued the final rule with few changes in the Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) payment policy section. Updates were limited to nominal additions and deletions of ICD-10 codes used to map the primary reason for SNF stay diagnosis to appropriate PDPM clinical categories from the lists included in the proposed rule.

AHCA members can read a summary of the payment updates, the SNF value-based purchasing program, and the IMPACT Act quality reporting additions. Member login is required.