Poor Disaster Oversight Imperiled Nursing Homes, Senate Report Finds

Poor Disaster Oversight Imperiled Nursing Homes, Senate Report Finds

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Medicare officers mentioned that the prevailing temperature vary requirement had proved ample and that it utilized in instances of catastrophe, despite the fact that that’s not acknowledged explicitly within the emergency preparedness rule. “We’ve now had just a few go-rounds of emergencies, and that appears to be an applicable vary based mostly on our expertise,” Ms. Brandt mentioned.
The Senate investigation famous a number of different issues. Licensing companies acquired complaints about 38 expert nursing services in Texas and 42 in Florida after final yr’s storms. Practically all of the properties had been inspected, and greater than 1 / 4 had been discovered to be poor or noncompliant with federal necessities.
The investigators referred to as for emergency plans to learn by senior medical workers at nursing properties and reviewed and permitted by educated regulators, a step not required in all states.
Senior Care Facilities, the proprietor of two nursing properties in Port Arthur, Tex., that flooded and required assist evacuating, had plans that referred to as for residents to be moved to different services owned by the corporate. However the different facilities had been a lot farther away than the 200 miles laid out in its contract with an ambulance transportation firm, in response to the Senate report. Emergency plans additionally outlined the that means of a hurricane watch and warning incorrectly. The corporate, whose services acquired citations for substandard care from Texas well being care regulators, didn’t reply to a message requesting remark.
Nursing residence directors additionally want higher steering in making the tough choice of whether or not to evacuate or shelter in place earlier than a predicted hurricane or flood occasion, the report mentioned. It really useful that regulators require that these choices “be made by certified personnel in a methodical manner.”
In an indication of the politically divisive instances, the nursing residence report was launched by the Finance Committee’s minority workers, though the investigation started with letters to regulatory companies that had been signed by Mr. Wyden and the Republican committee chair, Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah, and had been despatched on the request of Florida’s Republican and Democratic senators.
“Whereas the preliminary inquiries had been bipartisan, the rating member determined to concern a partisan report,” Nicole Hager, the committee’s performing communications director, mentioned in an e mail. She added that Mr. Hatch, too, would “proceed to work to make sure nursing properties are ready when catastrophe strikes.”

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