Long-Term Care

Taking steps toward compliance at your SNF

PPS Alert for Long-Term Care, February 1, 2009

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If you’ve justified the reason your SNF does not have a compliance program because you’ve heard that having no program is better than having unused policies and procedures, you may be headed for trouble.

Although having compliance policies that your facility doesn’t apply or enforce may be riskier than having no compliance program at all, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) still won’t look favorably upon a facility with no compliance program during an investigation, says Betsy Anderson, BSA, vice president of FR&R Healthcare Consulting, Inc., in Deerfield, IL.

Now is a good time for nursing facilities to revisit compliance programs, since the OIG has recently released supplemental compliance program guidance. Although compliance programs are not mandatory, they can protect your SNF from OIG investigations and penalties.

Fortunately, ensuring that your facility stays in compliance doesn’t have to become an enormous project, Anderson says. Start by learning the key elements of a successful compliance program, identifying your facility’s risk areas, and incorporating compliance procedures and personnel into your current quality improvement efforts.

This is an excerpt from a member only article. To read the article in its entirety, please login or subscribe to PPS Alert for Long-Term Care.

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