Nursing home abuse

Understanding The Medicare Rating System For Nursing Homes

January 9, 2017 by Carrie Capouellez
Nursing Home Compare

When our loved ones can no longer live on their own, many people look for nursing homes to provide their loved ones with the care and supervision they need. However, finding the right nursing home can be very challenging, and choosing the wrong one can expose your loved one to nursing home abuse.

For people considering a nursing home for their elders, one way to gauge whether a particular facility is a good fit is to check Nursing Home Compare. All nursing home facilities accepting Medicare and Medicaid are subject to inspections and ratings by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), which are made available to the public.

Nursing Home Compare Rating System

The Nursing Home Compare database allows consumers to understand what nursing home facilities are doing well, and what they need to improve on. Nursing Home Compare will assign a rating based on several quality guidelines. The best performing nursing homes receive a five-star rating, and the worst performing nursing homes receive a one-star rating.

How Are Ratings Determined?

CMS considers three factors when rating a nursing home: (1) results from heath inspections, (2) what quality measures the facility has in place, and (3) the number and qualifications of the staff. Each factor is assigned a rating from one to five, and then all three ratings are averaged together for an overall score.

When evaluating a facility’s health inspections, the three most recent comprehensive inspections and any inspections due to complaints are taken into account. To determine a facility’s quality measures, CMS looks at certain aspects of care like whether or not residents received flu shots, are in pain, or are losing substantial weight. Quality measures can differ for long-term and short-term care, so it’s important to know which one you are interested in when looking for a care facility. Finally, CMS collects staffing data, including the amounts of working hours of Registered Nurses (RN), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) and Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVN), Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), and Physical Therapists (PT).

Lopez McHugh: Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys 

Using the Nursing Home Compare rating system can help you pick the right nursing home for your loved one. However, if despite your best efforts, you or a loved one experiences nursing home abuse, the experienced elder abuse attorneys at Lopez McHugh LLP can help you put a stop to the abuse and get the compensation you deserve.

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