State officials move to tighten oversight of nursing homes


Massachusetts health regulators moved to significantly strengthen oversight of nursing homes, creating a unit that will conduct unannounced inspections and promising to impose fines on problem-plagued facilities.
News Story (Massachusetts)

Kay Lazar
Boston Globe
February 11, 2016
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Tags: Nursing Homes, Seniors

Organizations mentioned/involved: Greater Boston Legal Services (GBLS)


DETAILS

Nursing home advocates have lamented that the health department has not been more aggressive in using its longstanding ability to strip operators of their licenses or freeze admissions to problem nursing homes.

“These sanctions are clear in state and federal law,” said Wynn Gerhard, a senior attorney at Greater Boston Legal Services. “The question is, why don’t they utilize these powers in specific cases?”

Bharel said her department in March will require more information from companies seeking to buy nursing homes. That information will include details on the criminal and financial backgrounds of executives from a nursing home’s affiliated companies.