Texas and New Mexico Providers, please note the following two (2) items:

New Guidance for LTCR Providers on Coronavirus

LTCR urges all providers to review the Centers for Disease Control’s new guidance on strategies to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in long-term care facilities. To ensure you have the most current information on COVID-19, visit the CDC and state websites.


All providers must continue to follow all laws, regulations, guidance and their own internal policies and procedures related to infection control.  Providers may need to address and update their emergency preparedness plan, as well.


Texas Hotlines:

  • 888-963-7111
  • 877-570-9779


New Mexico Hotlines:

  • 505-827-0006




COVID-19: New ICD-10-CM Code and Interim Coding Guidance

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics will implement a new ICD-10-CM diagnosis code for the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), effective with the next update on October 1. See the announcement and interim coding guidance for more information:


2019 National Preadmission Screening and Resident Review Report

Today the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the 2019 National Preadmission Screening and Resident Review (PASRR) Report, an annual report prepared by CMS with its contractor, the PASRR Technical Assistance Center. Sections 1919(b)(3)(F) and (e)(7) of the Social Security Act require that all applicants to and residents of Medicaid-certified nursing facilities (NFs) be screened for mental illness and intellectual disability and, if necessary, be provided specialized services while in the NF.

The 2019 National PASRR Report summarizes states’ self-reported data related to certain quality measures, including the timeliness of the PASRR evaluations and the outcomes for applicants and residents resulting from the evaluations. The report also summarizes responses to PASRR-related items on the Minimum Data Set. The results do not individually identify specific states. Similar information was released in a report issued in 2017.  For the 2019 report, go to:  https://www.medicaid.gov/medicaid/long-term-services-supports/downloads/2019-pasrr-national-report.pdf .


January 2020 Integrated Outpatient Code Editor (I/OCE) Specifications Version 21.0

CR 11564 provides the Integrated OCE instructions and specifications for the Medicare Integrated OCE version 21.0 that will be used as follows:

  • Under the OPPS
  • For Non-OPPS for hospital outpatient departments, community mental health centers, and all non-OPPS providers
  • For limited services when provided in a home health agency not under the Home Health Prospective Payment System
  • For a hospice patient for the treatment of a non-terminal illness

To access CR 11564, go to: https://www.palmettogba.com/Palmetto/Providers.Nsf/files/March_2020_HHH_Medicare_Advisory_Final.pdf/$File/March_2020_HHH_Medicare_Advisory_Final.pdf


Texas News and Information


Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC)


2020 Quality in Long Term Care Conference August 10-11, 2020

HHSC in collaboration with the University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing is hosting an informational two-day, free conference on quality long term care and CEs for 18 disciplines besides nurses!  Speakers will address current research and best practices as well as an overview of programs designed to improve the health and quality of life on individual in long term care settings.


The conference will be held at:   Hyatt Regency Lost Pines Resort and Spa, Bastrop, Texas.  Make your hotel reservations now!  Go to:  https://www.hyatt.com/en-US/group-booking/AUSLP/G-THHS

Registration opens May 1, 2020.

HHS Monitors Coronavirus, Provides Guidance to Long-Term Care Facilities

Texas Health and Human Services continues to closely monitor the novel coronavirus outbreak and provide guidance to licensed long-term care facilities to prevent the spread of respiratory infection in the state.

“While the risk of coronavirus infection in Texas remains low, we’re preparing for the potential spread of the virus within long-term care settings where older residents are particularly vulnerable to disease,” said David Kostroun, HHS deputy executive commissioner for Regulatory Services. “We are taking simple, but effective precautions and providing guidance to the facilities we regulate to help protect long-term care residents, employees and visitors from respiratory illness.”

To date, there have been no confirmed novel coronavirus cases that have originated in Texas.

To prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend long-term care facilities such as nursing and assisted living facilities use the same general strategies that are used to detect and prevent the spread of respiratory viruses like the flu.

Long-term care facilities in Texas are required to maintain infection prevention and control programs to prevent the spread of communicable diseases. Facilities are required to report any suspected outbreaks to the local health department or the Department of State Health Services.

Texas HHS is also encouraging facilities to post signs at the entrance instructing people not to visit if they have symptoms of any respiratory illness. Long-term care facilities should also ensure sick leave policies allow employees to stay home when ill, monitor and isolate residents with fever or acute respiratory symptoms to their rooms, provide infection control training, require frequent handwashing, and provide the right supplies for personal protective equipment. For more information on guidance for long-term care facilities, visit the CDC’s site.

If a facility believes a resident, visitor or employee may have been exposed or infected with COVID-19, they should contact their local health department or the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Texas HHS licenses and regulates 3,240 nursing and assisted living facilities throughout the state. The agency is currently developing additional infection control guidance for licensed health care facilities, child care operations, and other regulated entities.

Texas HHS is working closely with DSHS, the Texas Department of Emergency Management and other agencies to monitor and assess the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S.