by SmartLinx Solutions

June 10, 2016

On May 24, 2016, Tom Jegou, Payroll Product Owner at SmartLinx Solutions, co-hosted a Payroll-Based Journal Webinar with Carol Brenner from the Advancing Excellence Long-Term Care Collaborative (AELTCC) featuring special guest Dr. Edward Mortimore from The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS).

Payroll-Based Journal Webinar Presenters

The webinar was attended by hundreds of individuals interested in the details of the Payroll-Based Journal mandatory reporting. To learn more, you may wish to view the webinar on demand.

The most Frequently Asked Questions surrounding Payroll-Based Journal reporting are listed here along with responses direct from Dr. Mortimore of CMS.

Payroll-Based Journal Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is there any plan to delay the mandatory submission date of July 1, 2016? Currently there is no plan to delay the submission date.
  2. Which hours are counted? This is a slight grey area. You should report any time that is considered direct care. This may include situations that are hands-off such as planning conferences and assessments. Training away from the facility, meal breaks, or vacation would not be reported for example.
  3. What are the best practices for reporting hire and termination dates for contractors and agency staff? Is it required? Termination and hire dates are important for turnover and tenure. You should do your best to keep track of hire and termination dates, but it is understandable that termination dates can be difficult to get for contractors. We ask that termination be the last day that a contractor provided services in your facility. It’s not optional, but we’re asking for you best effort. In a worst case scenario leave it blank.
  4. How do we report salaried staff? Salaried staff are reportable. The challenge is that salaried staff must be limited to 40 hours, unless there is an additional payment that can be tied to the hours worked (bonuses not included).
  5. Why are salaried staff set at 40 hours? 40 hours is the nominal amount, but you would report the standard amount for salaried workers.
  6. Can we make changes to previously submitted data? Yes, the cutoff date is 45 days after the end of the quarter. You may be able to submit after that period, but any data after the 45 day cutoff will be flagged and will get disregarded for public reporting or CASPER.
  7. Are education hours provided during work hours reportable? No, educational hours are not reportable.
  8. If our assisted living homes offer the Medicaid waver program, do we need to report a Payroll-Based Journal? No, you do not need to report.
  9. Do we need to report staff who are direct billed to CMS that come in our facilities? No, as long as those specialists are billing Medicaid or patients directly (privately). If the specialist is being paid by the facility to provide care then yes, they must be reported. If the bill is split you’re going to have to allocate it well by tracking the hours where the facility is paying.
  10. Would a nurse consultant that supervisors all the nursing be reported? If it a corporate position no, but if they are on site and supervising, yes.
  11. Is the MDS Coordinator included in the two user limitation for the PBJ system? The default is two users despite position, but you may email the help desk to request an additional user.
  12. My organization has two divisions, one provides long-term care and the second does not and isn’t required to report for PBJ. How do we report staff working in both divisions? Develop an allocation method for staff in different roles. Build a document for hours paid and spent in each of those areas.
  13. If the salaried employees providing say 10 hours a day providing direct care. Why is it counted as salaried when those hours are delivered to residents? It’s tied to hours paid not hours provided. The default is 40 hours.
  14. Does an administrator who attends an offsite meeting report those hours? No, they do not report those hours.
  15. Are the job codes weighted for reporting purposes? No weighting at all currently. It is possible in a year and a half when we start working on our rating system, to apply to that rating system.
  16. If we are under contract for therapy services in a nursing home, are we suppose to have a separate PBJ with the facility, or need to be in the same system with the facility? If therapy services come in, it is the facility’s obligation to report those hours.
  17. Should we be reporting on residents in non-certified beds? No, you should not include staff hours providing services to residents in non-certified beds.
  18. Is there a link between PBJ and Five Star Ratings? It is expected to show in the five star rating but not for quite some time. The first quarter data isn’t shown until late 2016, and won’t really be usable until early 2017. We expect late 2017, early ’18 to see data on nursing home compare.

Additional Payroll-Based Journal Resources: