State Representative Barbara Sears (R-Monclova Twp.) applauded the passage of Senate Bill 264, which creates a quality incentive payment structure for nursing facilities to receive payment under Medicaid.

The bill aims to improve nursing home quality in Ohio by establishing 23 accountability measures. These measures were selected by the Nursing Quality Subcommittee of the Unified Long-Term Care System Advisory Workgroup, which included governmental and nursing stakeholders, as well as legislators such as Representative Sears.

“This bill received input from a wide range of parties, including legislators, facility operators, state administrators and consumer advocates,” Rep. Sears said. “The measures laid out in this legislation allow the state to begin the process of funding measurable outcomes, instead of simply funding full beds.”

Senate Bill 264 requires the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services to award a nursing facility one point for each accountability measure that it meets, and a facility must earn at least five points in order to receive full payment. Each nursing facility would receive a quality incentive payment of $3.29 per Medicaid bed day for each point it earns, with the possibility of earning $16.44 per Medicaid bed day.

Additionally, the bill provides for a qualifying nursing facility to receive a quality bonus if it is awarded more than five points for meeting accountability measures. It also provides for a nursing facility to receive a quality bonus if the residual budgeted amount for quality incentive payments for the fiscal year is greater than zero.

“Ensuring quality in our Skilled Nursing Facilities is paramount to the residences and families of our state. This legislation begins the process of recognizing the facilities that are committed to providing a high quality of life. In this way, Ohio is a leader for other states to follow,” Rep. Sears said.

The bill passed through the House with a vote of 94-0. The Senate concurred with House changes and the bill now only waits for the governor’s signature to become law.


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