Issue: November 11, 2016

Published on November 11, 2016

Articles in this issue:

PBJ Data Submission

Author: Lisa Volk and Nancy Leveille* Published in Clinical & Quality

Thursday evening, November 10, 2016, CMS, through its Quality Technical Support Office, e-mailed a notice to all providers related to PBJ submissions. CMS has addressed several technical questions related to the PBJ submission process and, most notably, has indicated they will accept data submission past the deadline and will not impose penalties for providers that have not met the deadline at this time.  

The CMS message is included below in its entirety.  AHCA has been raising many of the concerns noted in the message on your behalf with CMS. We appreciate that they are starting to address them and will not issue penalties for those who try to submit data.

We understand providers have had questions regarding submitted their data into the PBJ system.   With the deadline for submission almost upon us, we felt it would be beneficial to send out an email addressing some of the more frequently asked questions to help facilitate the process for you.

1.  System Access

We acknowledge that the large number of provider submissions as we near the submission deadline has exceeded the amount of planned network capacity and has resulted in high network utilization which is subsequently causing slowed system response times as well as an inability to access the system for some users.  We encourage users to pull down their validation reports during off peak times to relieve system congestion and allow more bandwidth for data submissions and less user frustration.  Note that we are extending our QTSO Help Desk hours to include support from 8am to 5pm EST both Saturday November 12th and Sunday November 13th.

2.  Deadline for Submission

CMS will accept data submission past the deadline and will not impose penalties for providers that have not met the deadline at this time. However, we expect providers to still make a good faith effort to submit data as soon as possible for Fiscal Year 2016 Q4 (July 1 - September 30, 2016).

3.  Facility IDs

We understand several providers are confused about what number to use when PBJ asks for the Facility ID (FAC_ID).  The list of FAC_IDs can be found by logging on to CMSNet, clicking "QIES Systems for Providers" and then under "PBJ Submissions" click "Look Up Facility ID".

4.  Hire/Rehire Dates

For questions related to entering the hire and rehire dates for employees, please see Section 8.4 ("Manual Data Entry and XML Submission Rehire Process") of the PBJ User Manual, which can be found here,

5.  Saving and Submitting Data

We are aware that some facilities may be confused on the use of the "save" button in the PBJ system.  The save button is the same as submitting your data.  Additionally, you can save and submit as often as you'd like throughout the quarter, such as every two weeks, and you can always go back and edit your data for previous weeks.  Do not wait until the end of the quarter to save and submit. CMS will not collect any files until after November 14th.

6.  CMS 671 Form and PBJ Submission Discrepancies We are aware that some providers are concerned that PBJ data will be compared to the information submitted on their CMS-671 form.  We acknowledge that there are differences between how staffing data is submitted in comparing the instructions and policies of PBJ and the CMS-671, and they cover very different time frames. Therefore, in general, we do not expect PBJ data to match the data from the CMS-671.

Additional Resources

Policy Questions should be sent to 

Technical Issues/Questions should be sent to

QTSO Help Desk at (877) 201-4721 or E-mail at 

PBJ Website:


Lisa Volk, RN, B.P.S., LNHA
Director, Clinical & Quality Services
518-462-4800 x15

Nancy Leveille, RN, MS
Sr. Director, Member Operational Support
518-462-4800 x20