CMS Announces Relief for SNF’s in Quality Reporting Programs in Response to COVID-19

Yesterday, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the extraordinary measures they are implementing for relief to clinicians, providers, and facilities that participate in Medicare quality reporting programs. This action specifically relates to granting exceptions from reporting requirements and extensions for clinicians and providers participating in Medicare quality reporting programs.

Preferred Therapy Solutions compiled a summary of this announcement relating directly to SNF providers, which can be found below. A complete review of the CMS announcement can be found here.

BACKGROUND

As part of the Skilled Nursing Facility Quality Reporting Program (SNF QRP), SNF’s are required to submit both assessment and claims-based data for quality measurement on a quarterly basis. Failure to comply with the data submission would trigger a 2% payment penalty due to non-compliance with the SNF QRP. In addition, the Skilled Nursing Facility Value-Based Purchasing program (SNF VBP), SNF’s Medicare payment will be adjusted on an annual basis by an incentive multiplier that is based upon the SNF’s performance on the SNF 30-Day All-Cause Readmission Measure (SNFRM).

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has acknowledged that healthcare providers are facing unprecedented challenges dealing with 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). In an effort to decrease burden on the front line healthcare workers, CMS is granting exceptions from reporting requirements for post-acute providers in the Medicare quality reporting and value-based programs. Specifically, as it relates to the SNF QRP:

·    Submission of Q4 2019 data is optional. If a facility chooses to submit the data, it will be used to calculate to 2029 performance and payment.

·    Data from January 1, 2020 through June 30, 2020 (Q1-Q2) does not need to be submitted to CMS for purposes of complying with quality reporting program requirements.

In regards to the SNF VBP:

·    Qualifying claims from January 1, 2020 through June 30, 2020 (Q1-Q2) will be excluded from the claims-based SNF 30-Day All-Cause Readmission Measure.

These reporting exceptions and exclusions will allow SNF providers to focus on the care that is desperately needed at this time without concern that there may be potential payment penalties or negative payment adjustments based on non-compliance with reporting or an increase in hospital readmissions.

Preferred Therapy Solutions continues to provide its partners with vital information that may impact rehabilitation management, reimbursement policies, and clinical programs, supported with compliance and regulatory requirements that are necessary for a thorough understanding on practices and procedures. If you have any questions, please contact Matt Nash, Vice President of Strategic Development at: mnash@preftherapy.com

SOURCE: CMS https://go.cms.gov/2WCLXVW