Best practices, tips, education, lessons learned — helping healthcare professionals advance their work

healthcare training

Healthcare training adapts for a new era

Changing payment models and a projected labor shortage are leading educational institutions and policymakers to re-think the traditional approaches to training healthcare workers. The new programs are giving future healthcare professionals more flexibility and a better understanding of patients’ lives in the real world, helping prepare them for a future of value-based reimbursement. Read more

SNF staffing challenges: millennials may be the solution

Staff recruitment and retention are perennial challenges for skilled nursing facilities, and research shows the problem may be getting worse. Long Term Living recently featured the perspectives of a former healthcare administrator and a longtime nursing home resident on the staffing issue, shedding light on the importance of attracting a younger generation of talent. As more tech-savvy millennials enter the workforce in search of jobs with meaning, are SNFs doing all they can to connect with young professionals? Read more

For SNFs, changing payment models help sharpen the focus on quality

A recent article in HealthLeaders Media outlines the ongoing evolution of SNFs, pointing to the development of new payment models as a major driver of change. “An ever-increasing number of SNFs nationwide are embracing the shift from fee-for-service medicine to delivering quality care at the lowest possible cost,” states the article. Read more

NOTICE Act may relieve SNF workers from being bearers of bad news

In July, we covered the recommendation from the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) that Congress mandate that hospitals communicate better with patients about whether they’ve been admitted as an inpatient or if they are on observation status. The Commission’s wish has now come true, thanks to the passage of the Notice of Observation Treatment and Implication for Care Eligibility (NOTICE) Act. The new law gives hospitals 36 hours (or up to the point of discharge, if that comes sooner) to notify Medicare beneficiaries of their outpatient status. Read more

Directors of Revenue Cycle Management are in demand

Managing the healthcare revenue cycle has never really been simple, but in today’s climate of increasing cost pressures, provider competition, payer negotiations, and changing regulations, it may be harder than ever. As two recent articles in Healthcare Finance have detailed, that’s why Directors of Revenue Cycle Management are in demand at hospitals and other healthcare facilities around the country. Read more

ICD-10 countdown

AHA publishes checklist for ICD-10 homestretch

The American Hospital Association has issued a downloadable checklist for healthcare administrators to consult for the “ICD-10 homestretch.” While the AHA’s list is aimed at hospital leaders, administrators in other healthcare settings will likely find it applicable as well, as it breaks down the to-dos into three universal categories: Read more

Uninsured rate falls below 10 percent

For the first time since 1972, the rate of uninsured people in the U.S. has fallen below 10 percent, according to the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics. That figure is one of several positive trends discussed in a new report from the National Health Interview Survey. The report shows a continued decline in the uninsured rate since 2013. Read more

Is your SNF ready for ICD-10?

October 1 draws ever-closer, meaning now is ICD-10 crunch time for many healthcare providers. At SNFs and other facilities where billers have become accustomed to working with a familiar and relatively limited code set, the change means a lot of studying is underway.    Read more

Are providers focusing on the right HIPAA precautions?

The New York Times recently published a column highlighting the difficulties many people encounter when trying to learn about—or even discuss—the health status of a friend or loved one. Read more

ICD-10 preparation

ICD-10 Preparation: Do you know your baseline stats?

As the ICD-10 countdown continues, coders and billers in physicians’ offices are taking many steps to make sure they’ll be ready. You’re likely attending trainings or using online resources to learn the new codes, and you’re probably also conducting testing with payers. Despite these measures, many in the industry fear that ICD-10 implementation will have a negative effect on their productivity and denial rates. Read more