September 01, 2008
Study finds survey system 'broken and can't be fixed'
A leading nursing-home association is calling for an independent panel to come up with new methods for overseeing nursing facilities. The association's task force issued 31 recommendations, highlighting steps that can be taken.
“The frustration of good providers has reached a boiling point,” said Tim Veno, executive director of the Kentucky Association of Homes and Services for the Aging, and a task force co-chair. (See left column.)
The American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA) on Aug. 12 issued its report, “Broken and Beyond Repair: Recommendations to Reform the Survey and Certification System.”
“This system is angry, broken and can't be fixed,” said Larry Minnix, AAHSA's president and CEO.
The 31 recommendations include short- and long-term goals, such as improving communication to surveyors and providers about new requirements and changes to the survey process, as well as standardized job descriptions for surveyors.
“Our short-term suggestions alone won't bring the system back to the intent of OBRA ‘87—achieving optimal, quality-based, resident-centered care—but they will tide the system over until broad systemic change can occur,” said Bonnie Gauthier, CEO of Hebrew Health Care in West Hartford, CT, and co-chair of the 20-member task force.