Very few nursing homes across the country meet staffing requirements proposed by the Biden administration, a new analysis found

The KFF study released Monday found that fewer than one in five nursing homes across the country meet the proposed number of nurses on staff in the facility at a given time. Over 80 percent of nursing homes would have to hire more staff to meet proposed requirements, researchers found. 

Under the suggested requirements provided by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), increased hours for registered nurses and aides would be required to strengthen “staffing assessment and enforcement strategies.”

While low staffing levels have sparked concerns in the past, their effects were more visible during the COVID-19 pandemic, the authors reported. 

“The adequacy of staffing in nursing homes has been a long standing issue,” they wrote. “The high mortality rate in nursing facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted and intensified the consequences of inadequate staffing levels.”

The analysis found that 90 percent of for-profit facilities did not meet the proposed staffing levels, while 60 percent of non-profit or government-affiliated facilities would need to hire more nurses. 

The results varied across states, the authors noted. All of Alaska’s nursing homes comply with the proposed staffing levels, for example, while only 1 percent of the facilities in Louisiana meet them, the study found. 

The study examined over 14,000 nursing home facilities that care for more than 1.2 million Americans. 

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