Shorter Stays Bring Rewards Under PDPM — But Only to a Point

nurse at bedside

Skilled nursing providers might be able to reap financial gains under the new Medicare payment model taking effect in October of this year if they can cut their average patient length of stay (LOS).

But the gains will only hold until a certain point, and providers that already have shorter LOS —- such as short-term rehab facilities — might find that the risks outweigh the rewards.

A Tuesday webinar on the financial implications of the Patient-Driven Payment Model (PDPM), held by the professional services firm CliftonLarsonAllen, explained why. Under PDPM, the physical and occupational therapy rate components have a variable per-diem adjustment, dropping by 2% every seven days after day 20 of a given SNF stay. The non-therapy ancillary (NTA) component also has a variable per diem adjustment, with that portion after three days declining by 67% until discharge.



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