Therapy OMRA’s: Change is Not Always a Good Thing

If allowed to proceed unchecked or unaltered Change of Therapy OMRA’s as outlined in the SNF 2012 Proposed Rule will greatly impact how therapy services are delivered.  Rural facilities are even more at risk.  More importantly, however, is the effect that this will have on the already overworked and overstretched MDS coordinators, and ultimately how services are delivered to the elderly.  As this Long-Term Living article details, Change of Therapy OMRA’s or COT’s will prove to be a logistical nightmare not only for therapy, but nursing and most importantly the patient!  Already faced with increased assessment requirements under MDS 3.0, MDS coordinators nationwide are reporting that they have seen the numbers of required Medicare assessments increase by as much as 50% compared to MDS 2.0.   Many complaints and comments relating to this dramatic increase in required MDS assessments have fallen on the deaf ears of Medicare officials on several SNF Open Door Forums.  Given the increased detail required by the MDS 3.0, this has stretched the resources of every facility serving the elderly under Medicare.  The documentation requirements have grown so dramatically that we are quickly reaching a point that patient care is at risk in order to Dot the I’s and Cross the T’s.  The COT OMRA if left unchanged will once again tax these resources that are already stretched too thin.  It may prove to be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

This article was written by Lance Hill, Director of Compliance for Therapy Center. Lance started his career in Occupational Therapy in 1993 and has been in therapy management since 1996. Lance helps Therapy Center respond quickly to regulatory changes within Medicare to avoid the risk of reviews or denials. As Director of Compliance, Lance also ensures that Therapy Center managers and field staff have the resources they need to excel in their job duties, keeping Therapy Center a leader in rehabilitation services.


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