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Top 10 news items of 2014

December 30, 2014
by Lois A. Bowers, Senior Editor
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New briefs written in 2014 about governmental and other standards were among the hot topics for the brand’s website visitors and social media friends and followers this year, revealed an examination of analytics by Megan Combs, associate editor for reader engagement. The list includes content written before Dec. 9. Here’s another chance to revisit these stories or read them for the first time. Be sure to check out our lists of top articles and top blogs, too.

1. CMS to overhaul 5-star nursing home rating system

The passage of the Improving Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation Act of 2014 gave the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) services new funding to re-do its Nursing Home Compare ratings process, Editor-in-Chief Pamela Tabar wrote in this October news item, our most popular of the year.

2. CMS issues final rule with home health payment changes for 2015

Changes effective Jan. 1 will apply to face-to-face encounters, therapy reassessments, rate setting, home health quality reporting and speech-language pathologists' conditions of participation, Senior Editor Lois A. Bowers wrote in this October news brief.

3. 22 pain measures added to national database

The National Quality Measures Clearinghouse database of the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality added 22 evidence-based quality measures related to pain management in long-term care, Bowers told readers in June.

4. One MDS assessment may take a NAC more than five hours to complete: study

“Where does the time go in a nurse assessment coordinator’s day?” Managing Editor Sandra Hoban asked in February. Results from an American Association of Nurse Assessment Coordination study answer that question, she added.

5. Meeting the new dining standards

A new toolkit helps communities plan and serve resident meals in line with the new dining standards, Hoban shared in August.

6. CMS updates 'special focus facilities' list

Fifteen skilled nursing facilities or nursing facilities joined the latest CMS list of poor survey performers, Bowers reported in July.

7. Illinois hospice charged in $125M fraud case

An Illinois hospice services provider was accused of training employees to fudge hospice placements and upcharge for care, Tabar shared in January.

8. Survey reveals senior living wishes of prospective residents

A survey released mid-year providesd some insights into how Americans select senior living communities for themselves or their loved ones, Bowers wrote.

9. Online dementia program available

More than 10,000 people registered to take a free, nine-week online course about cognitive impairment, Bowers shared in March.

10. 7 things your compliance plan must include

As home health and hospice care spending comes under increased scrutiny from the government, providers must make sure their compliance plans evolve to meet federal requirements and their own needs, Bowers wrote in March.

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