Do Skilled Nursing Facilities That Provide More Rehabilitation Therapy Have Lower Rehospitalization Rates?
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This study examines whether skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) that consistently provided more rehabilitation therapy than other SNFs had lower 30-day rehospitalization rates. A cross-sectional analysis of 11 866 SNFs in the United States compared 30-day rehospitalization rates of SNFs that consistently provided more rehabilitation therapy to other SNFs using linear regression models. High-billing SNFs were defined as the 10% of SNFs with the highest proportions of Medicare fee-for-service claims that just surpassed the therapy minute threshold for the highest payment category. After controlling for patient and facility characteristics, high-billing SNFs had higher 30-day rehospitalization rates as well as longer median length of stay and greater mean cost per stay. Small reductions in the amount of therapy provided are unlikely to increase 30-day rehospitalization rates in SNFs. This has important consequences for the recently implemented patient-driven payment model, which incentivizes SNFs to provide less rehabilitation therapy.Copyright © 2021 The Authors. Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.