The Emergency Support for Nursing Homes and Elder Justice Reform Act of 2020 would renew and reauthorize funding for several programs in the Elder Justice Act of 2009.  Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley introduced the bill that would establish regional strike teams to respond to outbreaks in skilled nursing facilities and extend reporting requirements related to COVID-19 — both for the rest of the year and retrospective to the start of 2020. Nursing homes would be required to use “a portion of any payments received or federal relief funds made available on or after July 1, 2020, for responding to the COVID-19 emergency period” to meet those rules, according to the bill summary.

“Three things: malnutrition, bed sores, and dehydration,” Grassley told Skilled Nursing News. “If you took care of those three things in nursing homes, most people in nursing homes would have a [good] quality of life.”

The bill would also require that the HHS secretary and Office of Inspector General (OIG) compile a list of diagnosis codes that could indicate physical or sexual abuse or neglect of SNF residents, a requirement stemming from a recommendation of the OIG.

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