PBJ reporting

Why payroll vendors may fall short for PBJ reporting

The first reporting deadline for Payroll-Based Journaling (PBJ) is fast approaching on November 14, covering the fiscal quarter spanning from July 1 to September 30. For SNF administrators, PBJ is just the latest CMS requirement to stay on top of—something that they have told ABILITY is a perennial issue.

While some skilled nursing facilities are relying on their payroll vendors to help them meet their new PBJ challenges, others have already discovered some vulnerabilities with this approach.

Among the stumbling blocks SNF administrators have found are:

  • They’re not able to review, validate and fix errors in exports from the payroll systems
  • They have limited visibility to the data actually transmitted to CMS
  • They feel a lack of confidence in catching issues with the “midnight divide rule.” (For example, if an employee works a shift that starts at 11 PM on Monday and ends at 7 AM on Tuesday, one hour would be recorded for Monday and seven hours for Tuesday.)
  • Manual submissions and processes are taking up too much time

These issues help explain the sense of anxiety that many administrators are feeling regarding PBJ. And while the current priority is simply for SNFs to begin using the system to submit their data, CMS is expected to up the ante – perhaps in 2018 – and factor PBJ data into a facility’s star ratings.

Experts say that’s why it’s important to make sure your PBJ process gives you the control and visibility you’ll need in the future. Monitoring actual staffing levels now can help you create benchmarks to compare actual staff to expected staff for one-, two-, three-, four-, and five-star levels.

ABILITY has compiled a number of flipbooks, videos and other resources to help SNFs prepare for the new requirements of PBJ, as well as other challenges in billing and revenue cycle management. Click here to browse the resources and begin refining your plans for PBJ and beyond.