New Type of Ultraviolet Light Makes Indoor Air as Safe as Outdoors A new type of ultraviolet light that may be safe for people took less than five minutes to reduce the level of indoor airborne microbes by more than 98%, a joint study by scientists at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and in the U.K. has found. Even as microbes continued to be sprayed into the room, the level remained very low as long as the lights were on. The study suggests that far-UVC light from lamps installed in the ceiling could be a highly [...]
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Robot companions rolling out in New York, targeting older adult well-being A tabletop robot designed specifically for older adults is making its way into the homes of 800 New York residents, including those who live in senior living communities. The New York State Office for the Aging is partnering with Israel-based Intuition Robotics to place ElliQ artificial intelligence-powered robotic companions into independent living and assisted living communities as well as other homes of older adults. The robot communicates with older adults similarly to the way that Amazon’s Alexa does, but it can empathize with humans and respond to voice [...]
Parkinson offers ‘obvious solution’ to staffing problems, occupancy outlook and financing answers Two “critically important” issues will determine long-term care providers’ near-term fate over the next month and a half, the nation’s top nursing home leader said Tuesday. One is to achieve another extension of the federal public health emergency (PHE) designation before it expires April 15. The other will be achieving a favorable proposal for the 2023 Medicare payment rule next month, said Mark Parkinson, the president of the American Health Care Association / National Center for Assisted Living. “For the last two years, we’ve viewed our job [...]
Providers ‘very encouraged’ after meeting with CMS leader on nursing home reform After initial dismay upon hearing the administration’s strategies for sweeping new nursing home reform plans last month, providers were more optimistic after meeting with Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure on Monday. Leaders for four long-term care providers with primarily 5-star rated facilities met with Brooks-LaSure via video call and explained to her that “even using absolute best practices, it’s impossible to get workers right now.” “We’re very encouraged,” AHCA President and CEO Mark Parkinson told McKnight’s Long-Term Care News on Tuesday. “It was [...]
CMS updates COVID-19 testing guidance for nursing homes Medicare providers stand to lose more than $36 billion in reimbursements next year, a fate that looks more likely after Congressional leaders failed to stop slated cuts as part of a spending deal last week. A short-term government funding bill passed by Congress on Thursday and signed by President Joe Biden (D) on Friday keeps the government operating through Feb. 18. But to get the bill passed, Democrats dropped plans to avert looming cuts to Medicare over objections from Republicans. Industry stakeholders have pushed Congress to address a soon-ending moratorium on the 2% sequestration of [...]
BREAKING: CMS vaccine mandate upheld A vaccine requirement for staff at all U.S. nursing homes and other federally funded healthcare facilities can proceed, the Supreme Court said in a 5-4 decision Thursday afternoon. The Court lifted two injunctions blocking a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services rule covering more than 17 million workers, including all who may interact with patients at more than 15,000 nursing homes. The rule, announced Nov. 5 and on hold in half the country for several weeks, may now move forward. The High Court also voted 6-3 to stay, or block, a rule from [...]
District Court Grants Preliminary Injunction Blocking Biden Administration’s Vaccine Mandate for Health Care Workers Nationwide On November 30, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana halted the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for healthcare workers at certified Medicare and Medicaid providers and suppliers. The decision applies not just to the fourteen states that were parties to the lawsuit but to all healthcare workers nationwide. The court reasoned that unvaccinated healthcare workers in states other than those party to the suit also needed protection. Following the decision, CMS issued a memorandum on December 2, 2021 announcing that it would [...]
With billions in Medicare provider cuts looming, Congress stalls on solution Medicare providers stand to lose more than $36 billion in reimbursements next year, a fate that looks more likely after Congressional leaders failed to stop slated cuts as part of a spending deal last week. A short-term government funding bill passed by Congress on Thursday and signed by President Joe Biden (D) on Friday keeps the government operating through Feb. 18. But to get the bill passed, Democrats dropped plans to avert looming cuts to Medicare over objections from Republicans. Industry stakeholders have pushed Congress to address a soon-ending moratorium on the [...]