Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Analysis finds nursing homes across the country underreported low staffing levels; map shows local data

"Most nursing homes had fewer nurses and caretaking staff than they had reported to the government for years, according to new federal data, bolstering the long-held suspicions of many families that staffing levels were often inadequate," Jordan Rau reports for The New York Times.

The daily payroll records, gathered by Medicare and analyzed by Kaiser Health News, show for the first time "frequent and significant fluctuations in day-to-day staffing, with particularly large shortfalls on weekends. On the worst staffed days at an average facility, the new data show, on-duty personnel cared for nearly twice as many residents as they did when the staffing roster was fullest," Rau reports.

But nursing homes often exaggerated staffing levels and rarely revealed these common periods of low staffing. The Times created an interactive, searchable nationwide map of more than 14,000 nursing homes and how their staffing levels stack up:

New York Times map; click on the image to enlarge it or view the interactive version here.

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