The chairman of the Senate Special Committee on Aging introduced a bill this month that would establish a nationwide system of background checks for long-term care workers.
Sen. Herb Kohl (D-WI), who has long touted the importance of background checks, introduced the Patient Safety and Abuse Prevention Act of 2007. Sens. Pete Domenici (R-NM), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), Carl Levin (D-MI), and Hillary Clinton (D-NY) also sponsored the bill. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services currently is testing a pilot for background checks in seven states, a project promoted by Kohl.
The new system would coordinate abuse and neglect registries with state law enforcement registries, and cross-reference potential employees with the FBI’s national database of criminal history records.