By now, everyone operating a skilled nursing facility knows about CMS’ 2016 overhaul of the Requirements for Participation for Long-Term Care Facilities (“RoPs”). The final rule amending the RoPs was published on October 4, 2016. See 81 Fed. Reg. 68688 (Oct. 4, 2016). Many of the changes made by CMS do not impose new requirements on facilities, but instead clarify existing requirements. While CMS has been implementing the various changes in three phases over a three-year period, facilities should by now have implemented or taken steps to implement all of the new requirements.
We have reviewed the new RoPs and guidance documents issued by CMS to determine how the changes impact nursing facility admission agreements. There were changes or clarifications to a number of subjects that impact such agreements, including: resident discharge requirements, resident representative requirements, selection of attending physicians and other health care providers, room transfer and roommate requirements, visitation rights, facility liability for resident property, bed hold policies, etcetera.
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