CMS Conducting MDS Focused Surveys

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently notified State Survey Agency Directors, through an S&C Memorandum, of a series of Focused Minimum Data Set (MDS) and Dementia Care Surveys.  CMS is currently developing for two distinct focused survey processes to assess dementia care and the MDS 3.0 coding practices in nursing homes.  The dementia care focused survey is to document dementia care practices in nursing homes, while the intent of the MDS focused survey is to document MDS 3.0 coding practices and care planning in facilities.

At the June 26th Nursing Facility Advisory Committee (NFAC), VHCA learned from Rodney Miller, Interim Director of Office of Licensure and Certification (OLC), that Virginia is part of a CMS focused survey process in which 3.0 coding accuracy will be assessed in a total of five facilities in Virginia.  At the time of the NFAC meeting, the first survey had been completed with the pilot scheduled to be completed mid-July. The surveys focus on accuracy of coding of the MDS 3.0 and subsequent care plan development. It is an unannounced survey process with survey sample size based on census. According to the discussion, deficient practices identified in this survey could trigger a full survey. In addition to Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania are the other states participating in the focused surveys.