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QAPI Activities for Nursing Homes Addressed By CMS

by Published On: Jul 02, 2012Updated On: Jul 09, 2012

Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement (QAPI) in Nursing Homes Activities Related to QAPI Implementation was issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on June 29. 

The Survey and Certification Letter updates the agency's activities related to the implementation of Section 6102 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This section requires that CMS establish standards and provide technical assistance to nursing homes on the development of best practices relating to quality assurance and improvement.  

The letter details CMS' progress in: 

  • Developing tools and resources and the upcoming availability of these materials.
  • Initiating of a demonstration project.
  • Disseminating a quality improvement questionnaire to a representative sample of 4,200 randomly selected facilities. 

What's in the letter?

CMS initiatives to implement the QAPI provisions include:

  • Development of QAPI tools and resources that nursing homes may use to design and implement an effective QAPI program.

    • CMS, the University of Minnesota, and Stratis Health are identifying and designing QAPI tools and resources.
    • CMS has convened a Technical Expert P (TEP) -- including Dr. Cheryl Phillips -- in nursing home quality to provide feedback.  
    • These tools and resources will be made available to all nursing homes through a National Rollout.
  • A demonstration project in 17 facilities in 4 states to test tools and resources; provide technical assistance in QAPI implementation.

    • Initiated, September of 2011.
    • California, Florida, Massachusetts, and Minnesota
    • Each facility is provided onsite technical assistance in using the tools and resources.
  • CMS will release core materials later this summer/calendar year to support facilities in QAPI implementation.

  • CMS is drafting a QAPI regulation.

    • Facilities will be required to submit QAPI plans to CMS one year from promulgation of the final rule.
  • Using an independent contractor, CMS launched a nursing home quality improvement questionnaire.  

    • Abt Associates, Inc., and subcontractor, the CO Foundation for Medical Care, designed a questionnaire to identify baseline information related to current quality systems and processes in facilities.  
    • The questionnaire was sent to a representative sample of 4,200 randomly selected facilities on June 25, 2012.
    • Data collection is from June 25 through Sept. 28, 2012.
    • Abt Associates, Inc. will collect the completed questionnaires; responses will remain completely confidential; CMS will not have access to any identifying information. 
  • Attachments to this letter include:

    • The Nursing Home Quality Improvement Questionnaire information sheet [Cover letter: "Nursing Home Providers Given Opportunity to Participate in CMS' Landmark Quality Improvement Initiative"]
    • B- The Nursing Home Quality Improvement Questionnaire

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