Mary Madison, RN, RAC-CT, CDP
Clinical Consultant – Briggs Healthcare
The Q4FY19 release of the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) Program for Evaluating Payment Patterns Electronic Report (PEPPER) with statistics through September 2019 is now available for download through the PEPPER Resources Portal. To obtain your SNF PEPPER, the Chief Executive Officer, President, Administrator, Compliance Officer, or Quality Assurance/Performance Improvement Officer of your organization should:
- Review the Secure PEPPER Access Guide.
- Review the instructions and obtain the information required to authenticate access. Note: A new validation code will be required. A patient control number (UB-04 form locator 03a) or medical record number (UB-04 form locator 03b) from a claim for a traditional Medicare Fee-for-Service beneficiary with a claim “from” or “through” date between July 1 – Sept. 30, 2019, will be required.
- Visit the PEPPER Resources Portal.
- Complete all the fields.
- Download your PEPPER.
The SNF PEPPER will be available to download for approximately two years.
SNF swing bed units that are administered by short-term acute care hospitals will receive their PEPPER via the QualityNet secure portal by July 29, 2020, via an upload to the “AutoRoute_inbox” of QualityNet account administrators and those with user accounts with the PEPPER recipient roles. QualityNet administrators will receive download instructions in a separate email.
PEPPER’s New and Improved Format
SNF PEPPER has a new and improved format. While all of the data and information that you are used to seeing in your PEPPER is still available, the new format includes greater accessibility, cleaner presentation, and improved readability.
PEPPER files are now created in Excel 2016 as .xlsx files. Customers with an earlier version of Excel for whom upgrading to a newer version of Excel is not possible may find options to open the PEPPER file via an internet search. For example, you might search the following phrase to find free software that can open .xlsx files: “how to open xlsx files.”
PEPPER is an educational tool that summarizes provider-specific data statistics for Medicare services that may be at risk for improper payments. Providers can use the data to support internal auditing and monitoring activities. Visit the SNF “Training and Resources” page on the PEPPER website to access updated resources for using PEPPER, including recorded web-based training sessions, a sample SNF PEPPER, and the current SNF PEPPER User’s Guide. PEPPER is developed under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) by RELI Group, along with its partners TMF® Health Quality Institute and CGS.
Do you have questions or comments about PEPPER or need help obtaining your report? Visit our Help Desk to request assistance with PEPPER. Provide your feedback or suggestions regarding PEPPER through our feedback form.
The PEPPER Team