Our long-term care news is continually updated from dozens of sources around our industry and the web.

SNF workforce ‘far below’ pre-pandemic levels but finally showing signs of life

McKnights (06/27/2022) – Skilled nursing operators are finally making workforce gains in recent months, but they’re still experiencing slower recovery when compared to the assisted living sector. Experts believe skilled nursing will continue to struggle, despite offering competitive wages, due to a shrinking labor pool.

“Staffing has always been an issue for the senior housing and skilled nursing sectors,” Omar Zahraoui, senior data analyst for the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care, wrote in an analysis Thursday. Full story »

How the Newest Crop of Nursing Home Operators Are Challenging the Status Quo

Skilled Nursing News (06/27/2022) – After more than two years of a devastating Covid-19 pandemic and a historic labor shortage, some players in the skilled nursing space have chosen to prune their portfolio or leave the industry all together — making room for a new batch of operators to step up and take their place.

Nursing home businesses like Illinois-based Pearl Healthcare and Indiana-based Envive Healthcare have had to balance both the existing industry challenges and the growing pains of being relative newcomers to the space. Full story »

CMS Updates Nursing Home Medicare Requirements of Participation Guidance, Furthers Biden Reform Agenda

Skilled Nursing News (06/29/2022) – The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on Wednesday issued updated guidance for nursing home surveyors under the requirements of participation for Medicare and Medicaid, and in support of nursing home reform initiatives first unveiled in February.

As providers and industry associations digested the updates, one familiar theme emerged: concern over new requirements and regulatory pressures at a time when the sector is still facing Covid-related challenges and a labor crisis.

Staffing and infection control are among the main areas of focus in the CMS guidance. Full story »

If you really want safer nursing homes, start with these reforms

McKnights (06/21/2022) – AARP Ohio blasted out a fairly typical press release Tuesday, criticizing nursing homes for being short-staffed and sharing news about an in-room camera law that would allow families to catch bad actors, well, in the act.

The advocacy organization also called for higher RN staffing levels and cautioned against any “staffing solutions” that might not be safety-minded. Forget the fact that nursing homes in Ohio and every state in the nation are reducing admissions rather than taking in patients they can’t safely care for when understaffed.

But buried deep beyond the push for safety (and, of course, that other amazing buzzword, “transparency”!) were some curious nuggets about what could shape up to be truly substantive reform for Ohio’s nearly 1,000 nursing homes. Full story »

Starting From Within: How Nursing Home Operators Can Tackle Fewer Applicants

Skilled Nursing News (06/21/2022) – Staff turnover has reached unsustainable levels in the skilled nursing sector, with some staff – particularly certified nursing assistants (CNAs) – leaving faster than they can be replaced.

And it goes beyond just raising wages.

Despite a 7.13% national hourly wage increase for CNAs in 2021, turnover still increased significantly at the position — jumping to 59.95% compared to 39.38% in 2020.

Finding ways to keep CNAs in place and fulfilled for the long-term will be key to building a better skilled nursing workforce for the future. Full story »

$1M Grant Aims to Improve Nursing Home Quality

HealthLeaders (06/17/2022) – Funds will be used to spur reforms recommended in the National Academies' new report. A $1 million grant to LeadingAge, one of the nursing home industry's largest trade groups, aims to advance the recommendations in the recent National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s (NASEM) report, The National Imperative to Improve Nursing Home Quality: Honoring Our Commitment to Residents, Families, and Staff. Full story »

How Private Funding Plays a Crucial Role for Nursing Homes Amid Challenging Operating Environment

Skilled Nursing News (06/16/2022) - Policymakers would better serve the nursing home industry if they understood where, and how, capital markets can most effectively support the sector – namely how private funding plays a role in helping support a challenging operating environment. A deeper understanding of the SNF capital market structure will help legislators develop policies that better align with combating weaknesses in the long-term care system, according to a new report compiled by ATI Advisory and commissioned by the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC). Full story »

Federal Bill Seeks to Understand Impact of Staffing Agencies in Health Care

Skilled Nursing News (06/08/2022) – While some see staffing agencies as more than a necessary evil for nursing homes amid industry-wide staffing shortages, lawmakers and industry advocates continue to push for more oversight and regulation over how these companies operate in the space.

Earlier this week, U.S. Sen. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota introduced the Travel Nursing Agency Transparency Study Act, a bill that would require the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct a study on the effects hiring agencies have had across the health care industry during the Covid-19 pandemic. Full story »

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