Harmful Nursing Homes Largely Escape Penalties, Report Finds


Nursing homes with a long history of harming patients are not being held accountable for the poor care they provide, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

"Some of these homes repeatedly harmed residents over a six-year period and yet remain in the Medicare and Medicaid programs," said the report.

Despite a law passed in 1987 establishing stringent federal standards for nursing homes, investigators found that Bush administration officials rarely use their authority to deny Medicare or Medicaid payments to facilities that provide poor-quality care and typically impose fines far less than the maximum of $10,000 a day.

Instead, the Bush administration has been allowing homes a grace period to improve conditions, which allows them to cycle in and out of compliance with federal standards for years.

Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-IA) called the study’s conclusions "very discouraging."

Administration officials said they feared that patients could lose access to care if they abruptly withdrew federal support, although they did promise to post information on the Web showing which nursing homes had been punished for providing substandard care.

Give Us A Call



Recent Articles

Limited Power of Attorney in Estate Planning

A power of attorney (POA) is a document that authorizes one or more parties (known as the “agent” or “attorney-in-fact”) to act on behalf of a person (referred to as the “principal”). Most powers of attorney documents are guided by

Read More >

Get The Answers You Need.

Free Situation Intake

Note: This is not the MassHealth website. We are a private law firm.

Tell Us Your Story

Note: This is not the MassHealth website. We are a private law firm.