Two days after a front-page New York Times article blasted understaffing at U.S. nursing homes, the Elder Justice Coalition called for Congress to investigate.  The New York Times story used the first round of Payroll-Based Journal data to make its case that nursing homes’ self-reported staffing data — which the government accepted until last year — was often bogus.  The bipartisan group issued a statement calling “for immediate Congressional hearings into a disturbing report issued this weekend pointing to chronic staff shortages in nursing homes.”

The coalition specifically asks that hearings focus on the response by Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to the report since “staffing shortages went unnoticed.” The group also wants changes to CMS’s star-rating system, which employs a bell curve to rate facilities’ performances, “to prevent this problem in the future.”



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