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Florida Senate President Wants To Boost Nursing Home Payments


Senate President Joe Negron thinks Florida's nursing homes should be paid more for providing care to the state's elder and frail residents.

Increasing Medicaid rates paid to nursing homes is a “very strong priority” of his for the upcoming legislative session, said Negron.

Many in the nursing home industry say the rates paid to providers are relatively low relative to the costs of providing care.

Negron didn't disclose how much additional funding he would like to direct to the rates.

“I do support an increase in their overall reimbursement. I have always been a strong supporter of nursing homes,” he said.

Additional funding could also help act as a buffer as the state moves away from its longtime cost-based reimbursement system and toward a new prospective-payment system.

The Legislature authorized the new payment system but delayed implementation until 2018. Under a prospective-payment system, the state sets a predetermined rate in advance that the providers will be paid. And under a cost-based system, the state pays nursing homes based on their cost reports.

Negron also supports using state dollars to help offset the costs of generators that nursing homes would be required to purchase under a proposed rule being pushed by Gov. Rick Scott.

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