Time to punch yet another hole in your money belt – things are getting tighter.
The belt buckling and cost-cutting taking place our industry is hitting yet another unprecedented level. According to a recent article in McKnights Magazine, The White House’s proposed 2015 budget includes sharp cuts to skilled nursing facility reimbursements, which has drawn strong criticism from the nation’s largest long-term care provider group.
The American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living – the nation’s largest provider group – slammed the proposed Medicare reductions, noting that the sector has “endured billions in cuts” in recent years.
With the healthcare industry taking so many hits in recent years, one wonders what this new piece of news will do to make things go from bad to worse.
Public response on blogs and social media has varied.
It ranged from anger (“They want to cut nursing home reimbursement even though care is increasingly complex, our aging population is about to explode… and everyone expects us to provide flawless care?!”) to apathy (“There’s no point in fighting with those ruthless politicians, I’m looking for a career change!”) to disbelief (“How do we possibly create the next generation of healthcare leaders when there is nothing positive to promote?”).
Regardless of which category you relate best to, it’s becoming increasingly evident that the old way of doing business is over.
But all hope is not lost.
The American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living is supporting proposals that could achieve savings without slashing reimbursements – such as penalizing SNFs that have high hospital readmissions rates.
This tidbit, in particular, caught our eye.
While we cannot always fight the system or change the White House’s agenda, we can put into place procedures that actively work around the labyrinth of complexities being thrown at us each day.
Consider things like customized patient software programs to drastically reduce readmission rates; aggregating your spending data from each supplier and consolidating it into one reporting system for increased financial monitoring; custom sourcing for supplies, equipment and specialty products to help slash costs. These strategic tactics are all tried and true.
So forget about going into the red. Discover smarter solutions – it’s the new black.