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⭒ News & Notes Archive

May 2016

In this Issue

Nursing Home Chain Ownership Changes are Linked to Poor Quality of Care

fascinating research article published in the May issue of Health Affairs reports that nursing homes that are frequently bought and sold by nursing home chains are plagued by low quality. The analyses and findings are described as the first comprehensive picture of how chain involvement in the nursing home sector has evolved.

Some of the study’s key findings include:

  • The proportion of chain owned nursing homes increased substantially during the study period, growing from 44% in 1993 to 51% in 2010.
  • Only two of the top ten chains in 1993 were still in operation under the same ownership structure by 2010.
  • Nursing homes owned by chains had many more deficiencies than independent nursing homes did.
  • Chains targeted the worst-quality nursing homes for acquisition and poor quality of care persisted in these facilities after they were acquired.

Illegal Nursing Home Evictions Not Just a California Problem

recent Associate Press story highlights the national scope of illegal nursing home evictions, typically centered on residents who are considered “difficult” or residents with families who demand good care. Nursing homes around the country take federal government money and promise to take care of residents with “all services necessary” but frequently renege on that promise and ignore rules to protect residents from unsafe discharges. The story reviews the damage done to several individual nursing home residents, including John Wilson and Bruce Anderson, co-plaintiffs in the CANHR v. Dooley lawsuit to compel the State of California to take action when residents are illegally abandoned in hospitals.

New Nursing Home Complaint Investigation Deadlines Take Effect on July 1, 2016

In welcome news for California nursing home residents, July 1 will start the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) phase-in of complaint investigations deadlines.

  • On and after July 1, 2016, CDPH must complete new investigations within 90 days of complaints involving a threat of imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm. In extenuating circumstances, the Department may extend the deadline by up to an additional 60 days upon written notification to the complainant and facility.
  • Investigations of complaints filed from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018 that do not involve threats of imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm must be completed within 90 days of receipt, with the possibility of an extension of up to 90 days due to extenuating circumstances.
  • Investigations of all types of complaints filed on or after July 1, 2018 must be completed within 60 days of receipt, with the possibility of an extension of up to 60 days under extenuating circumstances.

 Additionally, the law now sets a new timeline for CDPH to issue state citations (fines) associated with complaint investigation findings. For complaints subject to the new deadlines, CDPH must issue any citations resulting from its investigative findings within 30 days of the completion of the complaint investigation. The need for CDPH to protect nursing home residents from mistreatment is greater than ever with complaints skyrocketing during the last two years.

Legislation Update

CANHR Sponsored Bills

SB 33 (Hernandez): Medi-Cal Recovery Reform
Status: The Assembly Budget Committee adopted the proposed estate recovery language from SB 33. Unless the Department of Finance or DHCS objects or asks for amendments, the language will be included in the trailer budget language. 

SB 924 (Roth): Insurance: Annuity Transactions
Status: Assembly Insurance Committee

SB 938 (Jackson): Ensuring Appropriate Care for Conservatees with Dementia
Status: Senate Floor

SB 1065 (Monning): Dismissal or denial of petitions to compel arbitration: appeals.
Status: Assembly Judiciary

CANHR Support

AB 1655 (Dodd): Medi-Cal: personal needs allowance
Status: Died in Assembly Appropriations

AB 1797 (Lackey): In-Home Supportive Services: Application
Status: Senate Human Services

AB 2231 (Calderon): Care facilities: civil penalties 
Status: Assembly Floor

AB 2394 (Garcia): Medi-Cal: Nonmedical transportation
Status: Assembly Floor

SB 939 (Monning): CCRC Refunds
Status: Assembly Human Services

CANHR Oppose

AB 2104 (Dababneh): Public Financing of For-Profit Nursing Home Chains
Status: Died in Assembly Appropriations

AB 2341 (Lackey): Health facilities: special services
Status: Gutted and amended to bill about vacant judgeships

AB 2661 (Burke): Continuing Care Retirement Communities: refundable contracts
Status: Died in Assembly Human Service

SB 929 (Vidak): Compensation for Guardians and Conservators
Status: Assembly Judiciary

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Thanks from the CANHR Staff!