NMCAL Spotlight
National Assisted Living Week: September 9-15

Established by the National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL) in 1995, National Assisted Living Week® provides a unique opportunity for residents, their loved ones, staff, volunteers, and the surrounding communities to recognize the role of assisted living in caring for America’s seniors and individuals with disabilities. The annual observance encourages assisted living communities around the country to offer a variety of events and activities to celebrate the individuals they serve, as well as to help educate members of the public about this distinct aspect of long-term care. “Capture the Moment” is this year's theme for National Assisted Living Week, which hopes to inspire residents to realize their dreams and seize the day. 

ALF Task Force Meeting Scheduled

The New Mexico Center for Assisted Living (NMCAL) chair has called for a Task Force meeting on September 12, 2018. In an effort to engage all of our members to ensure we are meeting your needs, NMCAL will begin hosting quarterly meetings in different locations. This meeting will be in Las Cruces, and a conference call option is available!. If you didn't get a calendar invitation, email Tracy at We are also asking AL providers to send any items they would like placed on the agenda!

NCAL Webinar: Assisted Living Communities Compliance Considerations

The National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL) is hosting a webinar about how health care compliance programs are relevant for assisted living (AL) communities. This webinar will be September 20 from 2-3 pm Mountain Time. Members should register in advance here. The webinar will be recorded. While most of our assisted living providers do not participate in Medicare or Medicaid, it is still important to understand fraud and abuse laws such as the Anti-kickback Statute, which can apply when referral and financial arrangements are in place with other Medicare providers such as hospitals, hospices, home health agencies, or therapists. This webinar will give an overview of key issues that may arise for AL providers.

LTC Policy Points
NM Food Service Regulations Update

In 2016, the NM Environment Department proposed new Food Service and Food Processing Regulations that modified Food Handler Card requirements. The proposed requirement would have required all employees who handle any foods to acquire a Food Handler Card.

For the last two years, NMHCA has been advocating on your behalf to revise the proposed regulations to ensure that they do not create a regulatory burden for the direct care staff in your facilities.

As a result, the Environment Department has revised their proposed regulations so that those direct caregivers (and other employees) whose primary job function and/or job duties DO NOT include preparing and/or serving food will NOT be required to have Food Handler Card. Click here for a summary of the proposed changes to the regulation, including a comparison of the 2016 version and the proposed 2018 changes. Click here for a red-line copy of the proposed regulations.

United Healthcare Member Transition

On Tuesday, NMHCA hosted a conference call with Presbyterian Health Plan (PHP) for NMHCA members to speak directly with leadership from PHP regarding the transition, contracting, and claims issues. Over 50 members participated in the call and asked various questions regarding the transition.

Leadership from Presbyterian Health Plan appreciated the opportunity to speak with long-term care providers. They also provided NMHCA with contact information for their leadership team in case any members had any additional questions, comments, or concerns.

Jentry Hinton, Executive Director of Clinical and Long-Term Care Operations, 505-923-8127,

Brittany Maldonado, Director of Long-Term Care (Supporting LTC Nursing Facility and Agency Based Community Benefit), 505-923-5765,

Shannon Smith, Director of Special Programs (Supporting LTC Utilization Management and Self-Directed), 505-269-4406,

Lane Evans, Director of Health Services (Supporting PH Care Coordination and Inpatient UM), 505-923-5463,

Quality Improvement Evaluation System

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Value-Based Purchasing (VBP) Confidential Performance Score Reports, which contains each SNFs payment adjustment for FY 2019 along with information on rehospitalization rates and scores used to calculate payment adjustments beginning October 1, 2018. These reports are available to access in the CASPER system as of last Thursday, August 2. Visit ahcancalED to view a short video on how to read and understand the Performance Score Reports and your payment adjustment.

Details on how to access your reports via the Quality Improvement Evaluation System (QIES) and the CASPER reporting application can be found here. Please contact the QIES Technical Support Office (QTSO) Help Desk at if you need assistance in accessing CASPER/QIES.

For more information on the SNF VBP program and to access tools and resources on ahcancalED and other sites visit AHCA's VBP website here.

AHCA will also host a Preventing Hospital Readmissions session on Monday, October 8 at the Annual Convention & Expo in San Diego. Learn more and register here.

NMHCA Connects

NMHCA Visits The Suites Rio Vista

NMHCA staff is dedicated to visiting with members in their facilities. This week, NMHCA Executive Director, Jason Espinoza, visited The Suites Rio Vista in Rio Rancho to learn more about the facility, residents, and how the NMHCA can continue to evolve to better serve member needs.

NMHCA thanks to the facility administrator, Rayna Fagus, for the kind hospitality, tour of the facility, and for being a dedicated member of NMHCA.

NMHCA is working hard to directly connect with you in your community. If you haven't heard from one of the staff about setting up a facility visit, please email Jason at

NMHCA Opportunities

NMHCA Public Affairs Committee

NMHCA recently launched the Public Affairs Committee to strengthen the awareness and perception of members, as well as to enhance the experience for potential and current residents, families, and other stakeholders who enter our communities.

Committee Chair Pete Looker would like to invite any interested individual to participate in the committee. The committee's first meeting will be Tuesday, September 4 at 10:00 am.

If you would like to participate please contact Jason at

Upcoming Events & Trainings
Certified Medication Aide
September 11-21, 2018

Life Safety Code
September 24-25, 2018

Passenger Assistance Trainer Course
October 22-23, 2018

40-Hour Basic Course for Activity Directors
November 5-9, 2018
New Members
Business Associate

Advantage Assisted Living

BlueInk Technologies

Brown & Brown of New Mexico, Inc.

The Checkett Law Firm, PLLC

Handicare USA

Modrall Sperling

New Mexico Mutual


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4600A Montgomery Blvd. NE, Suite 205, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87109
Phone: 505-880-1088 | Fax: 505-880-1157 | NMHCA / NMCAL Home Page

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