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Hospital Patients to Receive Notice of Observation Status

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Legislation that will require hospitals to notify patients of their status as outpatients has passed Congress and should be signed into law by the President. Outpatient status limits the patient’s ability to receive Medicare coverage for care in a skilled nursing facility after discharge from the hospital. H.R. 876 Notice of Observation Treatment and Implication […]

Anniversaries for Landmark Programs

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This summer sees the anniversaries of several of America’s most important social welfare programs. While these programs have not eliminated poverty and inequality they do limit impoverishment and deprivation and create opportunity and a better life for tens of millions of Americans each year.   Happy anniversary to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and the American’s […]

Ratings of Home Health Agencies now Available

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Consumers seeking help meeting their health care or long term care needs face a confusing array of choices in care providers. How do they evaluate the quality of care that is available from various doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, Medicare plans, and home health agencies? The federal government, through its Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services […]

Medicaid’s 5 (Five) Year Look Back Rule

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One of the most confusing and misunderstood topics in elder law is Medicaid’s 5 (Five) year look back rule.  The following are five points that I hope will de-mystify this rule for you. (This discussion is based on the current (July 2015) Medicaid rules in Pennsylvania). It’s a look back period from the date of […]

Nursing Home Regulations Being Updated

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[The Federal Government is issuing proposed rulemaking intended to update and reform the requirements that must be met by nursing homes that participate in Medicare or Medicaid.  The proposed regulation will be formally published in the Federal Register on July 16th. But you can review it now here.  The proposed rule is described in the […]

Common Pennsylvania Inheritance Tax Queries

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Pennsylvania is one of a handful of states that imposes an inheritance tax on property that passes to beneficiaries when a resident passes. Most people are not familiar with Pennsylvania inheritance tax, because unlike income tax that needs to be addressed every year, Pennsylvania inheritance tax only comes into play when someone dies. Below are […]

Could Pennsylvania’s Long Term Care System Soon be Administered by Managed Care Organizations?

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Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services (DHS) and Department of Aging (PDA) have been seeking comments on a “Discussion Document” setting forth their intent to administer long term care services by Managed Care Organizations (MCOs). The plan is to start accepting bids by MCOs by the fall of 2015. The proposal is called the Managed Long […]