More than one third of the nation’s 15,500 nursing homes received relatively low ratings of one or two stars under the federal government’s recently revamped five-star Quality Rating System, according to a new analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation. This number accounts for some 39 percent of all nursing home residents. The rating system is overseen by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and is based on deficiencies that may be reported during health inspections. The measures relate to staffing and quality of care. The purpose of the rating system is to give consumers more information when making nursing home decisions. The issues surrounding nursing homes such as inadequate staffing, fire safety hazards and substandard care was the reason for instituting a rating system and the Kaiser study, as more and more people in American rely upon nursing homes as a viable alternative for the growing elderly population.
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