CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 6
Long-Term Care Providers
Ready to Face New Challenges
By Terry Skaggs
KAHCF Board Chair
s I look back over the 30 years I have worked in this
profession, it is easy to see the challenges providers
have faced. For example, those who have been in the
profession as long as I have would say that the Federal
Nursing Home Reform Act or OBRA '87 was singularly the
biggest change long-term care providers had to face since the
inception of the Medicare program.
That is until the 2016 Requirements of Participation were
introduced. This revision of health and safety standards
that long-term care providers must meet to participate in the
Medicare and Medicaid programs has changed the way we
will care for our residents going forward.
The overall theme of the new rules focuses on Person
Centered Care, Quality, Facility Assessment, Alignment
with HHS Priorities, and Comprehensive Review and
Modernization. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
Services (CMS) has set a three-year phase-in period for the
implementation of these expansive requirements.
Under Person-Centered Care, focus was placed on care
planning and discharge planning to make sure that assessments
were completed with a person-centered perspective.
Under Quality, CMS focused on quality of care and quality of
life as overarching principles for every service that is delivered
in the nursing facility. CMS focused on additional special
issues related to use of restraints, pain management,
bowel incontinence, dialysis services, and traumainformed care.
Next, CMS looked at the Facility Assessment
and Competency-Based Approach. CMS wanted
to make sure that facilities know themselves, know
their staff, and know their residents because that is
how you best achieve person-centered care. They
wanted to account for and allow for diversity in
both populations and facilities.
Further, CMS wanted to align with current
HHS initiatives like reducing unnecessary
hospital readmissions, reducing the incidents
of health-care-acquired infections, improving
behavioral health care, and safeguarding nursing
home residents from the use of unnecessary
6 | CareLink
Finally, comprehensive review and modernization of the
Rules of Participation was done to make them consistent with
current health and safety knowledge.
While these changes have been implemented through new
federal regulations, providers face a host of other challenges that
threaten our ability to meet these Requirements of Participation,
let alone meet the basic goal of providing quality care.
Long-term care has been battling reductions to Medicare
and Medicaid at the federal and state level. As Congress and
state legislators are looking for ways to balance budgets, they
have their eyes on reforming these programs. The Association
continues to present our case that providers must have the
resources necessary to care for our residents.
While it is easy to focus all of our attention on the regulations
being implemented at the federal and state level, perhaps the
biggest threat to our success has been quietly swelling in the
background but now is muscling its way front-and-center to
grab the spotlight - workforce issues.
Finding and keeping qualified employees has always been a
challenge, but as our population continues to age and requires
our services, the need for finding staff continues to be an issue.
Association leadership is hearing that facilities are struggling
to even find enough applicants for vacant positions.
The Board and Association have focused efforts to find
ways to link applicants with these employment
opportunities. KAHCF will be exploring with state
and education leaders on how to connect people
with openings in long-term care and available career
opportunities. Workforce development has been a
focus in Frankfort recently, as well.
Our mission at its core always was and is to provide
quality care to those who can't care for themselves.
We remember the challenges that OBRA '87 posed,
yet we met those issues head-on and transformed
ourselves to meet the changing times.
Now, it is time for providers to face a new challenge.
We have overcome obstacles in the past. Through
the leadership provided by this Association and
the dedication to our membership, I know we will
strive to ensure that providers are prepared and able
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017
Employee Turnover: Your Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment Plan
Are You Prepared for the CMS Emergency Management Rule?
KAHCF Vendor Members/ Buyers’ Guide
Index of Advertisers
KAHCF New Members
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - intro
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover1
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover2
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 3
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 4
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 5
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - Chair’s Message
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - President’s Message
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - Employee Turnover: Your Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment Plan
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 9
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 10
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 11
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - Are You Prepared for the CMS Emergency Management Rule?
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - KAHCF Vendor Members/ Buyers’ Guide
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 14
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - Association News
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - 16
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - Index of Advertisers
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - KAHCF New Members
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover3
CareLink - Fall/Winter 2017 - cover4