Medicare Part A: 5 Key Requirements That Haven’t Changed Under PDPM

By Caralyn Davis, Staff Writer - October 22, 2019

Directors of nursing services (DNSs) often take a largely hands-off approach to Medicare Part A coverage issues, says Suzy Harvey, RN-BC, RAC-CT, managing consultant at BKD in Springfield, MO. “In many facilities, DNSs more or less delegate the entire Medicare program to the MDS coordinator or the Medicare consultant. This ability to delegate is important because DNSs have such a demanding job. However, DNSs ultimately are responsible for all aspects of resident care. The MDS is a part of that, as are Part A skilled services.”

 

Consequently, DNSs still need to provide oversight—to be a member of the Medicare Part A team and to be aware of how well facility systems work by either auditing medical records or reviewing the results of delegated audits, suggests Harvey. “A DNS who just says, ‘The MDS coordinator handles that,’ could run into unexpected problems during medical review.”

 

“The implementation of the Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM) changed the payment system used for traditional Part A residents,” notes Harvey. “It did not change the coverage policies for skilled services.”