A Decade of Drugging
The Long Term Care Community Coalition published a report, “A Decade of Drugging,” examining how dementia care has – and hasn’t – changed since the launch of the National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in 2012 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Based on analysis of public antipsychotic drugging data, academic research, government reports, media investigations, and discussions with long-term care stakeholders including residents, families, ombudsmen, providers, and advocates, we find that a once-promising campaign has sputtered and fallen short of its goals to curb AP drug use.
Read the full report at https://nursinghome411.org/reports/decade-drugs/.
Joint Statement: MACPAC Report Calls for Increased Transparency in Nursing Home Spending
Day after day, the nursing home industry tells residents, families, and our political leaders that Medicaid rates are insufficient to hire more staff or provide better care. The fact is that there is virtually no accountability for where our Medicaid dollars go.
A new report by MACPAC, a non-partisan legislative branch agency, states what resident advocates have been saying for years: we need increased transparency in nursing home finances. The report found that the actual costs of Medicaid in nursing homes could not be calculated because of a lack of transparency in Medicaid spending. As a result, MACPAC could not determine the adequacy of Medicaid payments to nursing homes.
Read the full statement by LTCCC and other advocates at https://nursinghome411.org/macpac-report-transparency/.
Poisoned: Elder Justice “No Harm” Newsletter
In the Elder Justice Newsletter (EJN), we highlight citations, including deficiencies related to abuse, neglect, and substandard care, that have been identified as not causing any resident harm. The newsletter, published jointly with the Center for Medicare Advocacy, sheds light on the issue of so-called “no harm” deficiencies, which typically result in no fine or penalty to the nursing home. Our latest edition of the EJN includes the following “no harm” violations
- Poisoned: Lack of supervision at one-star nursing home leads to resident’s death.
- Moaning and yelling: Resident suffers excessive pain due to poor pain management.
- 91 degrees: One-star nursing home fails to provide safe living environment.
- Unkempt, messy, greasy: A surveyor’s description of unbathed residents.
- Avoidable accident: Resident falls after being left unattended on toilet.
- “Severe sadness”: One-star nursing home fails to provide appropriate medication.
Do these deficiencies sound like “no harm” to you? Check out the full newsletter and previous issues at https://nursinghome411.org/elder-justice.
Food for Thought and More in LTCCC’s Monthly Webinars
LTCCC conducts free monthly Zoom webinars on a variety of timely nursing home topics led by advocates and experts in long-term care. Our December webinar, “Garden of Eatin’,” featured a discussion on resident-directed dining that makes a difference in nursing homes. The program, led by Rebecca Priest (Project Coach, The Green House Project) and Linda McCoy (Dining Practice Partner, St. John’s Home), focused on 24-7 access to food and meals, simplifying menus and providing special experiences, and real food vs. supplements. LTCCC’s webinars are available on our YouTube channel and on the NursingHome411 webinar and events page.
Nursing Homes by the Numbers
Looking for nursing home numbers? Then head to the NursingHome411 Data Center. In December, LTCCC published four new user-friendly nursing home datasets: Staffing, Provider Info, Citations, & Penalties. Whether you’re a consumer, family member, ombudsman, researcher, journalist, policymaker, or advocate, these data can offer valuable information on nursing homes at the provider, state, CMS Region, and national level.
Here’s some more information about the data…
1) Nursing Home Staffing (Q2 2022): This dataset includes staffing levels for every US nursing home, including nurse staffing, contract staffing, and non-nurse staffing. This information is crucial for understanding the quality of care provided by nursing homes and identifying which nursing homes are understaffed. It is based on quarterly payroll-based journal data.
2) Provider Info: This dataset contains facility-level data (five-star ratings, ownership status, health inspection outcomes, etc.) for all US nursing homes. You can also download a “Problem Facilities” dataset which includes only the worst performing nursing homes. This is a useful resource for assessing nursing homes and making informed decisions about where to receive care.
3) Citations: This dataset includes information on citations issued to nursing homes, including the date of the citation, the category of citation (F-tag), and the level of scope and severity. This data is critical for understanding the level of enforcement on nursing homes and identifying whether a nursing home has a history of deficiencies.
4) Penalties: This dataset includes information on fines and payment denials received by nursing homes in the last three years. It is an important tool for assessing the extent to which nursing homes are (or aren’t) held accountable.
We hope these datasets will be useful to you in your research and advocacy efforts. If you have any questions or feedback, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: These LTCCC datasets are obtained from CMS (https://data.cms.gov/) and reformatted to improve accessibility for consumers. Methodology for LTCCC’s summary findings and other calculations can be found in the “Notes” tabs of the spreadsheets.
The NursingHome411 Podcast: Transfer and Discharge
LTCCC’s “NursingHome411 Podcast” features topical interviews, issue-oriented programming, and audio versions of our webinars. On a recent episode, “Transfer and Discharge,” Lindsay Heckler (Center for Elder Law and Justice) talks all things transfer and discharge: when they’re legal, when they’re illegal, and how to promote safe outcomes for residents. Listen to the NursingHome411 Podcast on our website at https://nursinghome411.org/podcast/, and on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and Google Podcasts.
Family Council Meetings in the NursingHome411 Zoom Room
LTCCC is pleased to support nursing home family councils and family member settings with our free NursingHome411 Zoom Room. Reserve a room—no time limits!—by visiting bit.ly/fam-council.
Questions about family councils? Learn more at https://nursinghome411.org/families/ or by contacting our Family Empowerment team at email@example.com.