NY Times to Publish Article Surrounding SNF’s Pursing High Profit Medicare Patients

Rick Patterson and Joanne O'Connor in Public Relations

Mr. Greg Crist, Vice President of Public Affairs for AHCA has informed us here at NYSHFA that the New York Times may run a story this weekend surrounding the LTC profession aggressively pursuing Medicare post-acute patients.  According to Mr. Crist, the article could also include elements along the lines of:

  • SNFs have a high profit margin on Medicare patients, higher than any other provider (will cite MedPAC report).
  • SNFs, particularly large, for-profit chains, are actively trying to recruit these patients;
    • She will cite information from company annual reports and other public filings;
    • She will cite brochures and other marketing materials used by various centers.
  • Some for-profit chains are forming to take care of only short-stay, Medicare patients.
  • These Medicare patients are sicker and require higher complexity of care.
  • However, SNFs are not ready to take care of these patients.
  • Will then cite a couple of cases where patients received poor care or suffered adverse events and perhaps filed lawsuits;
    • Will then cite OIG report on adverse events;
    • Will have comments from advocates and physician experts that SNFs are not ready or appropriately staffed, equipped or trained to care for these individuals.

Over the course of several days, AHCA has challenged the overall thrust of the storyline, dispelling some assumptions and comments made by others with whom the reporter had already spoken to.  AHCA provided data to challenge the notion that recruiting of Medicare has caused growth in SNF Medicare utilization.  AHCA has also highlighted that Medicare margins offset Medicaid losses as shown by MedPac.  Finally, AHCA aggressively emphasized the substance and success of the Quality Initiative; specifically, our nationwide efforts in lowering re-hospitalization rates.

Attached are talking points provided by AHCA that have served as the basis for its arguments.  Please feel free to use them, if needed after the article is published.

NYSHFA Contacts
Rick Patterson
Senior Director, Business Development
518-462-4800 ext. 19

Joanne O'Connor
Communications & Business Development Coordinator
518-462-4800 ext. 23