The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will make available free provider-specific comparative data reports for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) nationwide. The Program for Evaluating Payment Patterns Electronic Report (PEPPER) provides SNF-specific data statistics for Medicare services that may be at risk for improper Medicare payments. SNFs can use the data to support internal auditing and monitoring activities. PEPPER is a free report comparing a SNF’s Medicare billing practices with other SNFs in the state, Medicare Administrative Contractor (MAC) or Fiscal Intermediary (FI) jurisdiction and nation. CMS has contracted with TMF® Health Quality Institute to develop and distribute the reports.
SNFs administered through short-term acute care hospitals will receive their SNF PEPPER electronically in late August, 2013. The SNF PEPPER file will be uploaded to the File Exchange inbox of hospital QualityNet Administrators and user accounts with the PEPPER recipient role. Free-standing SNFs and SNFs administered through long-term acute care hospitals and inpatient rehabilitation facilities will receive their PEPPER in hard copy format via USPS first-class mail, shipped on August 30, 2013. The envelope containing the PEPPER will appear as below and is addressed generically to the Chief Executive Officer/Administrator. SNFs should be on the look-out for this envelope and ensure it is appropriately routed internally.
For more information on the SNF PEPPER, including training and resources for SNFs and the SNF PEPPER User’s Guide, please visit PEPPERresources.org. Questions may be submitted through the Help Desk. CMS encourages SNFs to provide feedback on PEPPER through a feedback form so that the reports can be continually improved.