With a new Pennsylvania Nursing Home Staffing Mandate in effect, what is the Future of Nursing Homes?

nursing home abuse
Date: September 25, 2023

Following the new federal minimum staffing proposal by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), less than 20% of nursing home facilities would meet the required number of hours for registered nurses and certified nursing assistants. This means that more than 80% of nursing homes nationwide need to hire more nursing staff if they wish to abide by the staffing requirements.

As of now, it appears that while most nursing homes meet the requirements for registered nurses, only 28% of facilities cover the minimum hours for certified nursing assistants. What does this mean for healthcare? Well, Katie Smith Sloan, president and CEO of LeadingAge states that “Nurses are in short supply — and not just in nursing homes. CMS’ proposal raises very real challenges for the whole healthcare sector. The end result is older adults and families’ access to care is in jeopardy.”

In finding solutions to the staffing problem, financials are a key aspect of why nursing homes are struggling to meet the required hours for staff. The cost of implementing the staffing requirements is a big concern for the industry as Medicaid spending reached about $54 billion in 2020, double that of traditional Medicare spending. This proposal hopes to ensure better quality care for the older adult population, yet in the process, it eliminates care altogether for facilities that do not meet the minimum staffing. Katie Smith Sloan adds, “The proposal raises very real challenges for the whole healthcare sector, and actually jeopardizes access to care for older Americans. No state will be immune from the harm.”  

The nursing home industry should not be pushing back on staffing mandates because insufficient staff is frequently the root cause of bad patient outcomes. Family members looking for a nursing home should have a discussion with the facility about their staffing levels prior to placing a family member in the home.

The new federal minimum staffing proposal by CMS will impact all nursing home facilities nationwide. If you or a loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse, neglect, or mistreatment, reach out to Dougherty Leventhal and Price today! Our seasoned attorneys are ready to fight for you! Reach out today. Remember… Injury? Call DLP. (570) C-A-L-L-D-L-P.

Sources

Towhey, Jessica R. “With 80 Percent of SNFs Needing More Nurses, Analysis Finds Waivers Likely to ‘mute’ Mandate .” McKnight’s Long-Term Care News, 18 Sept. 2023, www.mcknights.com/news/with-80-percent-of-snfs-needing-more-nurses-analysis-finds-waivers-likely-to-mute-mandate/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=NWLTR_MLT_DAILYUPDATE_091923&hmEmail=kLtkxfaljwgl1bjUhv0ooShteUXw46CA&sha256email=8d5532620a516d11d9968899918128bc424ff8d046eba28b815bfd21f4207dcb.

Stulick, Amy. “KFF: Fewer than One in Five Nursing Homes Could Meet Federal Staffing Proposal.” Skilled Nursing News, 18 Sept. 2023, skillednursingnews.com/2023/09/kff-fewer-than-one-in-five-nursing-homes-could-meet-federal-staffing-proposal/.

Julia Kourpas