2017 AHC/NCAL Annual Convention & Expo

Gambling with Function - What SNF Rehab Cards Will Policymakers Play?

Tuesday, October 17
8:00 AM - 9:30 AM
Location: Mandalay Bay Ballroom B
CE: Nurses: 0.0 | NAB: 0.0

Health policy research is exploding with evidence that 1) movement and exercise delays age-related functional and cognitive decline, 2) functional independence is a better predictor of health care costs than diagnosis and comorbidities, and 3) evidence-based rehabilitation improves outcomes. The bottom line is that people who move better are healthier, and have lower health care costs. Whether the plan of care for an SNF resident it to return home after a short stay, or to remain as a long-stay resident, SNF rehabilitation is there to assure that the resident achieves or maintains their optimum functional abilities – which reduces health care burden and costs. However, in today’s healthcare environment, policymakers are gambling with the function of older adults and are considering and implementing changes that may make it harder for SNFs to provide needed physical and occupational therapy and speech-language pathology services. The presenter will highlight recent research that supports the value of SNF rehabilitation services, and recent and proposed policy changes that could affect the odds for SNFs to successfully address the functional needs and health of short- and long-stay residents.

Learning Objectives:

Daniel E. Ciolek

Associate Vice President, Therapy Advocacy
American Health Care Association

Dan Ciolek is the Associate Vice President of Therapy Advocacy with the American Health Care Association. Mr. Ciolek's clinical and healthcare policy experience spans 30 years. He has practiced as a physical therapist clinician, manager, and business owner in a variety of settings including acute inpatient, inpatient rehabilitation, skilled nursing facility, home health, outpatient, and industrial health. He previously earned the Geriatric Physical Therapy Specialist certification, and is currently a certified Project Management Professional.

Before joining AHCA in 2013, Dan served in the Subject Matter Expert and Project Manager capacities in numerous Centers for Medicare and Medicaid contracts. Specific to therapy services, Dan's CMS work has included: national outpatient therapy utilization analysis for PT, OT, and SLP services; medical review; workgroup facilitation; development of policy recommendations; development of Medicare Learning Network and 1-800-Medicare content, and Physician Quality Reporting System reporting enhancements.

Additionally, Dan has contributed to therapy health policy activities at the University, State, Chapter and National levels. These activities included: elected and appointed positions; adjunct faculty/lecturer; author of professional articles; invited speaker; technical expert panelist, and invited contributor of health policy concepts to professional and provider organizations. Dan's advocacy efforts have been recognized through his receipt of two national professional awards for Policy Making and Advocacy for Older Adults.

Overall, Dan is recognized as a leading expert in therapy policy and research, including a focus on reimbursement issues. His efforts have contributed directly to numerous Medicare policy changes.


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Gambling with Function - What SNF Rehab Cards Will Policymakers Play?


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