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You CAN Leave the Nursing Home

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Sandra Rohrstaff
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Nursing home residents have the right to leave their facility on certain occasions without losing Medicare coverage. An outside pass or short leave of absence does not, by itself, mean that the resident no longer needs to be in a SNF (skilled nursing facility) to receive required skilled care.

Furthermore, according to the Center for Medicare Advocacy Alert, "a facility should NOT notify patients that leaving the facility will lead to loss of Medicare coverage." The Medicare Policy manual says that such a notice is "not appropriate." I would go a little further than the Medicare Policy manual and say that if a nursing home facility makes such a statement to a resident, it is lying.

For more information about the law and billing information, see the November 22, 2010 CMA's full alert.

Category: Elder Neglect

Sandra Rohrstaff
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Virginia Child Injury and Elder Abuse Attorney

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