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The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care

February 19, 2013

Consumer Voice Receives Response from CMS Regarding the Review of Long-Term Care Facility Requirements of Participation

The Consumer Voice recently received a formal response from Dr. Patrick Conway, the Director of the Office of Clinical Standards and Quality (OCSQ) at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), to its January 26th, 2013 letter requesting an update on the Office’s review of the long-term care facility requirements of participation (regulations that were promulgated to implement the Nursing Home Reform Law of 1987). In July of 2012, the Consumer Voice submitted recommendations on ways these regulations could be strengthened and improved at the request of the Office but, as of January 2013, had yet to receive an update on the status of CMS’s review. In the request to Dr. Conway, the Consumer Voice also asked for an update on OCSQ’s progress in developing regulations to implement the nursing home provisions under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

 In his response, Dr. Conway stated that the Office was continuing to review the requirements of participation for long-term care facilities and was considering all the information gathered from stakeholders as well as available research and recent reports from the Office of Inspector General. Additionally, Dr. Conway stated that it was OCSQ’s intention to promulgate regulations to implement section 6102 of the ACA, the Accountability Requirements for Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs) and Nursing Facilities (NFs), but that there is currently no date for publication of proposed rules. To read his full response, click here.

 The Consumer Voice will continue its efforts to get additional and more detailed information about the Office’s review of the long-term care facility requirements of participation and push for implementation of the ACA provisions pertaining to nursing homes.

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Consumer Voice Announces New Family Member Focus Group - Help Us Spread the Word!

The Consumer Voice is launching a brand new focus group to get family members' input and thoughts on issues related to their loved one's long-term care and services. By joining the Family Member Focus Group, participants will have the opportunity to respond and react to ideas and suggestions for changes in long-term care. Participants will also provide Consumer Voice staff with feedback about their experiences with their loved one's care. The feedback we receive will then be used to guide us in our policy work.

This focus group is ONLY open to family members. Family members' names will not be shared outside the group, and nothing said will affect the services their loved one is receiving.

The first meeting of the Family Member Focus Group will take place by telephone on a toll-free conference line on Wednesday, March 13th, 2013 from 2:00-3:30pm ET. Participants will be joined by other family members and Consumer Voice staff. We will ask questions, which participants will receive ahead of time, and then give participants an opportunity to respond.

If you know someone who has a loved one receiving long-term services and supports, please pass this info along! They can click here to register for the call. If they have any questions, they can contact Sara Cirba at scirba@theconsumervoice.org or at 202-332-2275 x 221.

Thank you for sharing this new opportunity with the family members you know!

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Pioneer Network Webinar on Team Efforts to Prevent and Heal Pressure Ulcers

Join the Pioneer Network’s MDS Webinar Series “It Takes a Team to Prevent and Heal Pressure Ulcers” on March 12th. Teams at two nursing homes will describe how they work together to identify residents at risk and implement effective interventions to prevent pressure ulcers from occurring and to heal those that do. The webinar will provide information about how putting the right systems in place for staff to work together and with support from management, staff closest to the resident are able to individualize care to each resident’s customary routines.

It Takes a Team to Prevent and Heal Pressure Ulcers
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
2:00pm EST

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EWA Publishes National Health Services Corps Guide for Geriatrics and Geronotology Providers

In an effort to draw more geriatrics- and gerontology-trained providers into the National Health Services Corps Loan Repayment Program, The Eldercare Workforce Alliance, with guidance from the Health Resources and Services Administration staff, created a guide specifically for geriatrics and gerontology providers. HRSA staff will hold a conference call for any applicants who may be interested in getting an overview and have questions answered. If you are interested in attending a call, contact Caitlin Connolly at cconnolly@eldercareworkforce.org.

View the guide.

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Kentucky Newspaper Publishes Federal Ratings of Nursing Homes

In Kentucky, The Courier-Journal ran a front page story including the federal ratings of all the nursing homes in Jefferson County and explaining the federal Five-Star rating system. The ratings were compiled by Kentuckians for Nursing Home Reform and will be updated every three months by the newspaper on its website. The two largest newspapers in Kentucky, The Courier-Journal and The Lexington Herald-Leader, now publish the ratings on a regular basis as a public service.

Read the article in The Courier-Journal.

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Advancing Excellence Exceeds 9000 Participating Nursing Homes

The Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes campaign announced that the number of participating nursing homes now exceeds 9000 nationwide. Now, nearly 60% of all nursing homes in the US are currently participating in the Advancing Excellence campaign. “Reaching this milestone is yet another demonstration of the continuing interest and involvement of nursing homes seeing the value of AE’s resources to improving the quality of care and life for their residents and staff,” states Dr. David Gifford, Co-Chair of the Advancing Excellence in Long- Term Care Collaborative which oversees the campaign.

For more information, read the press release which will be posted on the Advancing Excellence website today.

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Protect the Elderly from Dangerous Bed Rails

THANK YOU to those individuals and groups who have signed our petition which calls for safety standards for adult bed rails. Haven’t signed yet? Please take the time to do so today by clicking here. We have a goal of 1,000 signatures and we need your help to reach that goal!

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About The Gazette

The Gazette is a weekly e-newsletter, published by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care and the National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center. If you do not wish to continue receiving this publication, please unsubscribe. Your contributions and comments are welcome and should be sent to swells@theconsumervoice.org. Copyright © 2013.

The Consumer Voice is the leading national voice representing consumers in issues related to long-term care, helping to ensure that consumers are empowered to advocate for themselves. We are a primary source of information and tools for consumers, families, caregivers, advocates and ombudsmen to help ensure quality care for the individual. The Consumer Voice's mission is to represent consumers at the national level for quality long-term care, services and supports.

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National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care - 1001 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 425 - Washington, DC 20036 - telephone: (202) 332-2275 - fax: (202) 332-2949 - info@theconsumervoice.org