CMS leader: Situation could have been different

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The acting administrator of the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, said Wednesday that it "would not have been [his] choice" to withhold the names of 74 poorly performing nursing homes from the public while at the same time releasing the information to nursing home advocates.

CMS chief Kerry Weems says he did not know when the list was distributed, or who distributed it. "It may have been before my tenure," he said. Weems has been at his current position for three months.

The controversy surrounding the public list of 54 nursing homes and the private list of 74 nursing homes has garnered attention from top members of the Senate, including Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Hillary Clinton (D-NY). Harkin and Clinton have introduced legislation to compel the release of the full list. If approved by Congress, Weems said the CMS would abide by the legislation.