Healthcare industry groups have promised in writing that additional Medicare payments to nursing homes over the next decade will finance direct resident care. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) received written assurances from five organizations whose members operate long-term-care facilities that a large portion of a 3.26% Medicare rate adjustment will be used to provide hands-on care to residents. The groups include the Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care, the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging, the American Health Care Association, the American Health Quality Association and the American Hospital Association. Nursing homes will receive $450 million in reimbursement in fiscal 2004 as a result of the adjustment, which was made in July to correct past errors. The industry also received a 3% annual payment update in 2004, which will translate to an additional $400 million. -- by Tony Fong
Nursing homes vow extra funds will go to care
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