Don’t let your Facility Assessment get the best of you, or worse yet, sit on the shelf collecting dust. It can be an essential tool in your tool box when it comes to systems analysis and strategic planning.
Let’s face it. There has been no lack of change in the long-term care field over the past couple of years. In fact, the rapid firing of change has many providers paralyzed. During presentations when I have been presenting on the Facility Assessment, there has been less then 5% of the hands raised in the room when I ask, “Who has their Facility Assessment complete?” The bottom line is just take a step forward.
Here are some tips to help get you started:
1. There are some great tools out there provided by CMS. In September 2017, CMS presented an overview on the Facility Assessment requirements in Appendix PP of the State Operations Manual and even developed an “optional” tool.
2. The overarching goal of the Assessment is to have facilities determine what resources are necessary to care for their residents competently during day-to-day operations and emergencies. If this sounds familiar, it should. There are several areas in the Assessment that have direct linkage to Emergency Preparedness so be sure to make this connection whenever possible.
3. Also, take the guesswork out of the assessment process and consider data sources you currently have for aggregating resident data, such as RUG scores and data on resident acuity that populates your CMS-672 form. These sources will allow you too accurately assess your capability to deliver the care that your resident population requires.
4. Last, take your Facility Assessment to the next level. The data you collect can play an integral part in your strategic planning process. Recognition of capacity based on levels of care, analyzing resident needs to identify staff competency voids and taking a deeper look at the services you provide may lead you to unveil a new program opportunity or even help streamline your current service offerings.
Providers were required to complete an initial Facility Assessment by November 28, 2017 and update that Assessment annually at a minimum. For consistency and to avoid the peaks and valleys of census, it may be best to conduct your review at the same time each year to limit the variations in resident census and acuity.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have questions or need assistance!
Amy Lee, RN, BSN, MSN, CRRN