March 07, 2022
Biden Unveils Plans to Support Poorest-Performing Nursing Homes
During his address, President Biden also announced plans to boost staffing and oversight for nursing homes across the country. Nursing homes became an epicenter of COVID-19 transmission during the pandemic, with elevated levels of infections and deaths reported even after the rollout of vaccinations. The nation has seen 200,000-plus nursing home residents and staff die since the pandemic began two years ago.
Increased staffing levels have proven to be a highly significant factor in limiting covid cases and deaths, and the Administration has now responded by allowing the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to propose minimum staffing levels within long term care facilities.
Nursing homes are also encouraged to limit disease spread by shifting to single occupancy rooms, while phasing out rooms with three or more residents. The President called on Congress to provide $500 million for health and safety inspections in nursing homes.
Finally, the President vowed to crack down on nursing home facilities and investors with a track record of safety concerns. This includes harsher penalties for certain areas of poor performance, as well as the creation of a database that would track owners and operators across the country to highlight their safety records.
“Nursing home residents are still one of the groups at highest risk for severe COVID-19 infection,” said President Roach. “We welcome the President’s plan to ensure that the most vulnerable seniors and people with disabilities are given the resources and attention they deserve.”