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Lessons Learned: How a SNF's Failure to Prepare for Survey Resulted in Costly Consequences ($100,000)

Lessons Learned: How a SNF's Failure to Prepare for Survey Resulted in Costly Consequences ($100,000)

Published on June 21st, 2023

The importance of thorough planning and preparation for a CMS survey cannot be overstated. In this blog, we explore the story of a skilled nursing facility (SNF) that neglected to adequately prepare for their survey, resulting in a cascade of detrimental outcomes. We'll delve into the costly repercussions they faced, including citations, fines, denied payments, and how SMK Medical came to their rescue to help them regain compliance. Learn from their mistakes and ensure your organization is well-prepared to avoid such costly pitfalls.

X Care Center, a reputable SNF, was known for providing exceptional care to its residents. However, they underestimated the importance of comprehensive survey preparation and paid a heavy price.

During their CMS survey, numerous deficiencies caught the facility off guard, leading to a staggering total of 20 citations. The deficiencies ranged from infection control lapses to medication errors and inadequate staff training. These citations tarnished the facility's reputation and resulted in over $100,000 in fines imposed by CMS.

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To make matters worse, X Care Center's lack of preparedness led to the denial of payment for a substantial number of Medicare days—60 days, to be exact. The financial burden of lost revenue from denied payments further strained the facility's resources.

As if facing citations, fines, and denied payments weren't enough, the facility received two Immediate Jeopardy (IJ) citations. Immediate Jeopardy is a serious finding indicating that a situation has caused or is likely to cause serious harm or death to residents. This critical situation required immediate corrective action to protect the well-being of residents and prevent further harm.

Recognizing the urgency and severity of the situation, X Care Center turned to SMK Medical for assistance. SMK Medical, with its expertise in survey readiness and compliance, immediately stepped in to help X Care Center regain its compliance standing.

SMK Medical initiated an intensive intervention plan to address the facility's deficiencies and prepare them for upcoming revisits.  SMK expert consultants worked closely with X Care Center to rewrite their Plan of Correction (POC), focusing on sustainable improvements and resident safety. Additionally, SMK Medical provided comprehensive education and training programs to address staff knowledge gaps and ensure adherence to CMS regulations.

The Result: The facility successfully passed its subsequent revisits and regained compliance thanks to the collaborative efforts between X Care Center and SMK Medical. Their rewritten POC and the expert guidance and support provided by SMK Medical proved instrumental in rectifying deficiencies and restoring the facility's reputation. They are now on the way to becoming a two-star facility.

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Conclusion: The story of X Care Center serves as a reminder of the potential consequences of failing to prepare for a CMS survey adequately. The hefty fines denied payments, and Immediate Jeopardy citations they faced could have been prevented through thorough planning, proactive compliance measures, and expert guidance.

Don't let a lack of preparation cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars and put your facility's reputation at risk.

If you need assistance preparing for a survey, turn to SMK Medical. With our extensive experience in survey readiness, compliance, and staff training, we can help you navigate the complex regulatory landscape and position your organization for success.

Remember, your facility's compliance and reputation are too valuable to gamble with. Contact SMK Medical today to ensure you're well-prepared and minimize the risk of costly consequences that could otherwise be avoided.

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