CMS Announces New Goal for Decreased Antipsychotic Use for Dementia Patients in Long Term Care

The National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes is an initiative of the Centers for Medicaid and Medicaid Services, in partnership with a broad range of state agencies, advocacy groups and providers, to improve the quality of Long Term Care for patients with dementia.  According to CMS, the mission of the partnership is to promote non-pharmacologic approaches to dementia care.  A key initial focus for the Partnership has been reducing the use of antipsychotic medications for dementia patients.

According to CMS, since 2011, when 23.9 percent of nursing home residents were receiving an antipsychotic medication, there has been a decrease of 38.9 percent.  At the close of the second quarter of 2018, there was a national prevalence of 14.6 percent.   The new goal is for an additional 15 percent reduction for long term residents in facilities with a currently limited reduction rate.  For more information about the National Partnership, visit: https://www.cms.gov/Medicare/Provider-Enrollment-and-Certification/SurveyCertificationGenInfo/National-Partnership-to-Improve-Dementia-Care-in-Nursing-Homes.html.

Long Term Care facilities receiving Survey and Certification Letters during 2018 should prepare for compliance with CMS’ Revised Interpretive Guidelines in anticipation of surveys.  For assistance in compliance with the new guidelines or survey preparation, contact Mary Squire at msquire@shhealthlaw.com.