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News: Pennsylvania’s Nursing Facility Assessment Program

Pennsylvania’s Nursing Facility Assessment Program
On February 5, 2005, the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare (DPW) published the final notice of the enactment of the Nursing Facility Assessment Program. The purpose of this assessment program is to raise State funds in order to qualify for federal matching funds, in the form of Medicaid. The State imposed this retroactive assessment on all non-federal, nonpublic licensed nursing facilities, based on how many residents the facility had each day.

This overly expansive grouping included the few non-federal, nonpublic Pennsylvania nursing homes which subsist solely on private donations. While most of the nursing homes being taxed received the benefit of federal funding in return for paying the State assessment, some did not. The completely charitable homes were being asked to pay the tax, without receiving the benefit of federal assistance.

Schubert, Bellwoar, Cahill and Quinn was instrumental in calling attention to this inequity. The Firm worked closely with DPW to have the assessment amended through the passage of appropriate regulations, which were published on December 17, 2005 in 35 Pa. Bulletin 6845.

Now, any totally charitable homes (those not charging for services rendered) are exempted from participating in the Nursing Facility Assessment Program and as a result, these valuable community resources are better able to continue their mission of providing care to the poorest in our society

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