The threat of devastating ‘bad debt’ grows as nursing home billing offices flounder

The threat of devastating ‘bad debt’ grows as nursing home billing offices flounder
Date: August 28, 2023

Recent staffing shortages in billing departments have created hostility in nursing homes. Kristy Brown, director of SNF Financial Services for Quality Healthcare Resources shares that there are “staffing shortages in departments that we have not seen before. We have a generation of billing people that are retiring or left because they wanted to stay remote …[and providers are having trouble] finding qualified people, especially those that have the expertise level to be able to follow the complex payer landscape that we see now with managed care.”

Since Federal Medicare claims are timely when the bills are not filed or resolved due to said staffing shortages, debt continues to accumulate. As these issues remain unsolved, billing offices will lose money their clinical staff had fairly earned. Katie Smith Sloan, LeadingAge CEO and President addressed a letter to President Joe Biden to discuss nursing home standards. Sloan argues that in addition to monetary loss for clinical staff, “holding nursing homes to a standard that is impossible to meet because there are not enough workers in the country, then fining them for not meeting that standard, is going to force the quality of care down …”  When the environment of nursing home facilities is tense, the care of residents may also suffer. Notwithstanding these challenges, nursing homes are required to ensure a level of staffing that will allow their employees to meet the needs of their residents. The elderly residents of these care providers should not be the ones to suffer as a result of problems associated with billing.

If you or a loved one you know is not receiving proper care or neglect and abuse, reach out to Dougherty Leventhal & Price. Remember … Injury? Call DLP! (570) C-A-L-L-D-L-P.

Julia Kourpas