COVID-19 Leading to Regulatory Changes for Nursing Homes: Expert

November 20, 2020

The changes have come fast and furious for nursing homes since the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March. From patient care and staffing challenges to bottom line and marketing issues, officials have had to deal with major shifts in the way their organizations and facilities operate. And the changes are not over yet.


COVID-19 has inflicted devastation on nursing homes, and regulatory changes likely are coming, according to David Grabowski, a professor of healthcare policy at Harvard Medical School wasand the keynote speaker to the National Association for the Support of Long Term Care, reports McKnight’s Long-Term Care News.


Pandemic-related problems — among them, the exorbitant number of resident and staff deaths, resident loneliness due to shutdowns, and low occupancy rates and hospital admission rates — has revealed underlying systemic problems, Grabowski said. These include low Medicaid payments, inadequate pay for staffing, an ineffective regulatory model, lack of quality transparency and fragmented ownership structures.


The Coronavirus Commission for Safety and Quality in Nursing Homes released a report in September that provided 27 recommendations and more than 100 action steps for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The report analyzed areas ranging from testing to access to visitation to aging nursing homes’ infrastructure.


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