Affordability and reputation counter each other in skilled nursing facilities

Skilled nursing facilities often bear the brunt of negative press surrounding long-term care, and their place in the future of the continuum could rest on changing that reputation in the minds of the public and lawmakers.

“We need to get that reputation back, because we are part of the solution,” Celtic Consulting president Maureen McCarthy told an audience at the American College of Health Care Administrators (ACHCA) Convocation in Orlando, Fla. on Monday.

In the coming value-based landscape, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will be increasingly focused on achieving the best outcomes for the least amount of money, regardless of the setting, according to Skilled Nursing News

That new horizon for long-term care providers has caused consternation in the skilled nursing industry, as insurers and health networks ostensibly have an incentive to shift potential patients into the home health setting — typically the cheapest along the continuum.

But McCarthy, a registered nurse who founded the Torrington, Conn.-based Celtic Consulting in 2001, reframed the question by looking a little farther up the spectrum. An inpatient rehabilitation facility (IRF) might receive $900 to care for a patient with a specific condition, while a long-term acute care hospital (LTAC) might bring in $750. A SNF, meanwhile, might only get $500.

Read the full analysis at Skilled Nursing News.

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