Hitting Reset on Pressure Injury Prevention

The complexities of the COVID-19 public health emergency required skilled nursing facility (SNF) operations to change dramatically and often to save the lives of the most vulnerable population. Through heroic efforts, SNFs transformed clinical systems of care, sometimes in less than a day, to win the war against the pandemic.

While operations and resources shifted to battle COVID-19, unintended consequences emerged—one being greater incidence of pressure injuries. Now that the pandemic is at a turning point, facilities can start to refocus and improve this trend. This article suggests ways to reorient efforts toward preventing and managing pressure injuries.

Read the full article at https://www.providermagazine.com/Monthly-Issue/2021/July/Pages/Hitting-Reset-on-Pressure-Injury-Prevention.aspx

Infection Control – Lessons Learned

​In Provider’s February issue, care providers share what COVID-19 policies have stood the test of time. In “Infection Control Lessons Learned,” clinicians say that new policies like patient isolation and enhanced disinfection procedures continue to work a year into the pandemic—and will continue to be important post-vaccination. “We probably will keep cohorting and isolation procedures for future outbreaks of infections, including the flu,” says Francine Rainer, chief clinical officer at PruittHealth.
What’s also emerged from the pandemic is a new portrait of the future of infection control.  Best practices and lessons are parts of it, along with new CMS policies that providers say should continue.
Take the Skilled Nursing Facility 3-Day Rule Waiver, for example. “We are focusing on this moving forward and advocating that it be a permanent change,” says Erin Prendergast, AHCA/NCAL senior manager, quality improvement.
Find out what best practices will continue and more about the new face of infection control and prevention here​.

Preparations for the Upcoming Flu Season

All eyes and resources in the long term care profession currently are focused on the COVID-19 pandemic, and rightfully so. This virus has spread through facilities like nothing seen before.
Unlike COVID-19, the flu season arrives like clockwork on a yearly basis. Unfortunately, in addition to the ongoing pandemic, flu season is looming just around the corner. Now more than ever, facilities need to be proactive in protecting their residents.
This article spotlights four areas for facilities to focus on for influenza prevention and control this fall, while also remaining in substantial compliance with the Focused Infection Control Survey from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

The pandemic has changed the ground rules for defining, measuring, and reimbursing quality.

While the COVID pandemic has changed much in post-acute and long term care, efforts to provide quality care and track outcomes, trends, and opportunities for improvement have continued unabated. Facilities didn’t swap quality measures for COVID care, they just added it to what they were already doing.
Yet the pandemic has put a spotlight on how quality is defined, measured, and reimbursed, and it has exposed what works and where changes are needed.
“It is crystal clear that our nursing home residents are a vulnerable population that should not be exposed to the risk of pandemic, either because they are sent to hospitals or emergency rooms [ERs] unnecessarily or because new patients with potential infections are allowed to come into a building that is not yet exposed to the infection,” says Rajeev Kumar, MD, CMD, FACP, chief medical officer at Symbria in Chicago.
“Hopefully, surveyors and CMS [Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services] will work collaboratively with nursing facilities to minimize bad outcomes, rather than go on a witch hunt to find and use unfortunate outcomes to penalize nursing homes.”
Read more at

“Alarming Spike” in COVID-19 Cases Seen in SNFs.

A new report released today by the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) shows skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) experiencing an “alarming spike” in COVID-19 cases due to community spread among the general population. The findings are based on recent data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

http://www.providermagazine.com/news/Pages/2020/AUGUST/Community-Spread-Causes-Spike-in-new-COVID-19-Cases-in-Skilled-Nursing-Centers.aspx

New York Providers Offer COVID-19 Lessons on Resident Care

A recent report in JAMDA offers new expert consensus recommendations for managing COVID-19 in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) with a focus on addressing screening of residents and staff, management of COVID-19 positive and presumed positive cases, communication during an outbreak, management of admissions and readmissions, and giving emotional support for staff.

In “Policy Recommendations Regarding Skilled Nursing Facility Management of COVID-19: Lessons from New York State,” the authors said, “Managing COVID-19 in this setting is uniquely challenging because the SNF serves both as a home and a medical facility.”

Learn more by going to

http://www.providermagazine.com/news/Pages/2020/JULY%202020/New-York-Providers-Offer-COVID-19-Lessons-on-Resident-Care.aspx