New ACA Rule Now Requires Nursing Homes and Long Term Care Facilities to Report Staff Information Electronically

A new section of the ACA now requires nursing homes and long term care facilities to report staff information electronically to the secretary. Section 6106 of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 (Pub. L. 111-148, March 23, 2010) added a new section 1128I to the Act to promote greater accountability for LTC facilities (defined as skilled nursing facilities and nursing facilities pursuant to new subsection 1128I(a) of the Act). The proposed implementation date is July 1, 2016. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has developed a system for facilities to submit staffing and census information for ACA Reporting.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) utilizes nursing home staffing data for a myriad of purposes in an effort to more accurately and effectively gauge its impact on quality of care in nursing homes. They also post staffing information on the CMS Nursing Home Compare website, and it is used in the Nursing Home Five Star Quality Rating System to help consumers understand the level and differences of staffing in nursing homes.

Section 6106 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires facilities to electronically submit direct care staffing information (including agency and contract staff) based on payroll and other auditable data. The data, when combined with census information, can then be used to not only report on the level of staff in each nursing home, but also to report on employee turnover and tenure, which can impact the quality of care delivered.

Therefore, CMS has developed a system for facilities to submit staffing and census information – Payroll-Based Journal (PBJ).  This system will allow staffing and census information to be collected on a regular and more frequent basis than currently collected. It will also be auditable to ensure accuracy. All long term care facilities will have access to this system at no cost to facilities.

CMS intends to collect staffing and census data through the PBJ system on a voluntary basis beginning on October 1, 2015, and on a mandatory basis beginning on July 1, 2016.

This webpage provides information on how data will be collected and who to contact for questions.  The information posted on the website is the first step in implementing section 6106 of the ACA and focuses on the type of data that will be collected, and how the data will be submitted to CMS.  Future steps will address activities such as how the data will be verified, how compliance will be enforced, and how the information will be publically reported (such as quality measures on the Nursing Home Compare website).  Information about these future steps will be communicated over the next several months.

The CMS is offering voluntary vendor registration at The information you provide will be used to contact you with important PBJ news, updates, and conference call information from CMS.

For more information about the Payroll-Based Journal (PBL) please visit the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) website.

You can also view the rule “Medicare Program; Prospective Payment System and Consolidated Billing for Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs) for FY 2016, SNF Value-Based Purchasing Program, SNF Quality Reporting Program, and Staffing Data Collection” on the Federal Register Website or download it here.

Source: CMS  |  2015 © Copyright Payroll Masters

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