Tallahassee-headquartered nursing home resident advocacy group Families for Better Care have released a first-of-its-kind, state-by-state nursing home report card detailing facilities’ treatment of their residents, as well as problematic deficiencies present in almost every elder care facility across the U.S.
“We’re excited about getting this report into the hands of public officials, nursing home owners, advocates and—most importantly—residents and their families,” Families for Better Care executive director Brian Lee told NBC affiliate Local 6 online.
The purpose of the report cards, according to Lee, is to not only spotlight states with facilities that provide seniors with the best possible care and highest standards of living, but also to put underperforming states on public notice while hopefully pushing them to reevaluate how they staff nursing homes and treat their residents.
“Our goal is to applaud those states that provide good care while motivating improvement for those that score poorly,” Lee said.
A key finding of the report, Lee mentioned, was how facilities with adequate numbers of staff, as well as acceptable staffing procedures and hiring standards, seemed to directly correlate with a state’s overall grade.
“A distinctive trend differentiated the good states from the bad states,” Lee said. “States whose nursing homes staffed at higher levels ranked far better than those with fewer staffing hours.”
A few key findings that resulted from Families for Better Care’s study include:
- The top 10 nursing home states in the country, in order: Alaska, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Hawaii, Oregon, Maine, Utah, Idaho, South Dakota, and North Dakota;
- The bottom 10 states for nursing home residents, in order of worst to least: Texas, Louisiana, Indiana, Oklahoma, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, Michigan, Nevada, Illinois;
- 96 percent of states are plagued by severe staffing issues, with residents receiving less than three hours of “direct resident care” each day;
- In almost half of all states, one in five nursing home were found to have “abused, neglected or mistreated” residents;
- Only three states—Alaska, Hawaii, and Maine—received “superior” grades in every staffing measure;
- Roughly 90 percent of all nursing homes were cited with at least one deficiency;
- No state received a majority percentage of above average for nursing home inspections.
The entire 2013 Nursing Home Report Card can be viewed and downloaded here.