The Palm Beach Post reported that Florida’s Republican legislators are inserting language into the budget conforming bills that will lower the average number of hours a day that nursing homes are required to provide direct-care to patients. The budget will lower the minimum weekly average of hours of direct-care that homes have to provide nursing care from 3.9 hours a day to 3.6 hours. Nursing assistant staffing hours would also drop from 2.7 hours to 2.5 hours.
After the budget meeting, a union for nursing home workers blasted the move as an erosion of Florida’s once-heralded minimum-staffing requirement for nursing homes enacted in 2001.
"This can potentially endanger lives, kill jobs and hurt our economy. Without adequate hands-on care, nursing home residents run the risk of getting pressure sores, falling down or suffering from malnutrition," said Cloreta Morgan, a CNA at Unity Health and Rehab Center in Miami and member of 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East.