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Updates from LTC Provider Associations Meeting with DOH

LeadingAge NY meets with the Department of Health (DOH) on a regular basis. Below are some updates for all DOH-regulated members from those discussions.


DOH reported that COVID cases are trending downward. Twenty-seven percent of nursing homes reported having an active case, representing fewer than 500 cases overall. There are fewer than 100 cases in adult care facilities (ACFs), with 6 percent reporting having an active case.

Site Visits to Resume

DOH reported that they plan to resume site visits to ACF and nursing home providers in the spring. The purpose of these visits is to connect with providers and learn more about what is happening in the field. Members are encouraged to let us know if the Department is visiting, and we are happy to assist you in planning.

ACF and Assisted Living Updates

DOH will be issuing a survey in a few weeks asking ACFs to submit documentation to demonstrate compliance with the federal Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings Rule. This is required to demonstrate to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) compliance with the rule. Click here for more background on this issue. LeadingAge NY noted that providers submitted documentation and had site visits several years ago. DOH needs updated documentation; however, they are working to ensure that the requests will be similar to the previous self-assessment to avoid duplicative work.

DOH also noted that they will be issuing a Dear Administrator Letter (DAL) to remind providers of the requirement to submit Notices of Termination to regional offices. DOH had also shared that they will be updating the Mental Health Evaluation soon, to address some questions and provide greater clarity.

Nursing Home Updates

DOH is planning to provide a webinar in two to three weeks to go over the nursing home minimum staffing penalty assessment and enforcement process, during which they will show how penalties were developed. To date, they have referred over 300 nursing homes to the Department’s Division of Legal Affairs (DLA) for enforcements, and none of the enforcements have been finalized.

DOH reported that they have received 129 nursing home infection prevention and control audit submissions. One is past due, and DOH is following up with the provider directly. DOH noted that most submissions require additional information from the provider, so they are evaluating how best to guide providers in understanding what is required. LeadingAge NY had provided feedback previously and will again take this opportunity to try to improve the process.

DOH also reminds nursing homes of the one-time opportunity to order infection control supplies. They have extended the deadline to close of business on Wed., Feb. 28th.

ARPA Funds to Flow Soon for ADHC and ALP Providers

DOH is in the process of rolling out initiatives for both adult day health care programs (ADHCs) and assisted living programs (ALPs). Both ADHCs and ALPs have submitted spending plans for funding made available through the federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Of 54 eligible ADHC applicants, 49 are moving forward, and funding is expected to go out in late March. The ALP plans were due on Fri., Feb. 23rd and are being reviewed. DOH anticipates that funding will be going out in late March or early April.

Master Plan for Aging

DOH staff provided a brief update on the Master Plan for Aging. Workgroups are finalizing recommendations for the deadline in March, and the State continues to hold Town Hall meetings around the state to get input from the public.

CON Updates

DOH is looking very closely at the certified home health agency (CHHA) need methodology currently, and Certificate of Need (CON) hospice work is continuing as well. DOH has not yet started the ALP CON process but is confident it will be done by the statutory deadline of April 1, 2025.

DOH Staffing

DOH is continuing to bring on new staff, with particular focus on the Hospice Center. They recently launched a Workforce Center, and DOH will have updates on both soon. The Department is also trying to fill key positions in the Center for Long Term Care Licensure, Planning, and Finance.

PHHPC Retreat

The Public Health and Health Planning Council (PHHPC) will have its retreat on May 9th. Topics identified for the retreat include long term care character and competency issues and public need. DOH also noted that they will do a presentation on “re-designing aging systems and care.” The retreat is a public meeting.

Contact: Diane Darbyshire, ddarbyshire@leadingageny.org, 518-867-8828