You can survive under PPS, AZ facility says
SNF impact shows sign of things to come
Like many rehab administrators in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), Pat Moorhead can divide her tenure at Scottsdale (AZ) Healthcare in two: before and after the prospective payment system (PPS) was implemented. The message she gave to administrators at the 2nd annual PPS for Rehabil itation Conference in Atlanta in April was this: You can survive, but be prepared to decrease therapy costs and manage them much more aggressively.
Moorhead, who recently served as manager of rehabilitation services for Scottsdale Healthcare, characterizes life under PPS in these ways:
Moorhead offers the following survival tips for providers:
— Know your rates and your payer mix. Compare these rates to your cost of care and evaluate potential new contracts carefully.
— Question every cost, beginning with supply costs. Supply costs are a great way to save money, Moorhead says. She has educated staff nurses about the expense of hospital supplies and services, and she plans to set up a display during Nurse Week that includes costs for linens, cathe ters, and every other supply used in a patient’s room. This causes nurses to think twice before automatically doing things. Actions that can seem small on the surface — such as using towels instead of sheets in some instances — add up to large savings in the course of a year.
— Look at managing care across the continuum. Scottsdale Rehab uses weekly team meetings to evaluate where in the continuum of care a patient can be served best, Moorhead says. "If a patient still meets the criteria for the acute care unit, we’ll keep them there rather than transferring them [to rehab or the SNF]."