FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 22, 2021
Jenna McDavid, Communications Manager
Senator Samra Brouk Supports New Legislation to Provide Transparency and Oversight of State’s Nursing Homes
ROCHESTER, NY - Today, Senator Samra Brouk joined her colleagues in the New York State Senate to pass a package of new legislation aimed at providing greater transparency and oversight of the nursing homes in the state.
“COVID-19 has devastated nursing homes, assisted living residences, and other facilities providing essential care to our state’s older adults,” stated Senator Brouk. “With this new package of legislation, the New York State Senate is taking important steps to ensure the safety and wellness of the seniors who call these facilities home. These bills not only directly respond to current events, but they also alleviate challenges in eldercare that have gone unaddressed for far too long. As a member of the Senate Aging Committee, I look forward to working with my colleagues in the legislature to continue improving care for older New Yorkers.”
This new legislation includes the following bills:
- Patient Care Ratio Reporting (S.4336A) directs the Commissioner of Health to establish a "Direct Patient Care Ratio" that would require all nursing homes to spend at least 70% of a facility's revenue on direct patient care.
- Publication of Nursing Home Ratings (S.553) requires that the most recent Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rating of every nursing home be prominently displayed on the home page of the Department of Health's website and at each nursing home facility's website and displayed at the facility for view by the general public
- Reimagining Long-Term Care Task Force (S.598B) enacts the “Reimagining Long-Term Care Task Force” to create a task force studying the state of both home-based and facility-based long-term care services in the state, and to make recommendations on potential models of improvement to long-term care services for older New Yorkers.
- Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program Reform Act (S.612A) creates "The Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program Reform Act" by expanding the current program to be more accessible and available to seniors and their families, while promoting the volunteer advocate program, and improve interactions between DOH and the Ombudsman program regarding complaints.
- Allowing Compassionate Care-Giving Visitors (S.614B) creates a standardized program to allow personal care and compassionate care visitors at nursing homes.
- Infection Inspection Audit (S.1783) directs the Department of Health to establish and implement an infection control inspection audit and checklist for residential care facilities.
- Quality Assurance Committees (S.1784A) requires adult care facilities to include "quality assurance committees" in their quality assurance plans.
- Requirements for Transfer, Discharge and Voluntary Discharge (S.3058) creates requirements for the transfer, discharge and voluntary discharge of residents from residential healthcare facilities.
- Standards for Ownership of Nursing Homes (S.4893) requires more review of ownership of nursing homes through the Certificate of Need (CON) process and requires more notice to the public during the CON process.
- Department of Health Death Records (S.3061A) requires the Department of Health to record COVID-19 deaths of nursing home residents that died in hospitals to be recorded as a "nursing home" death and require the Department of Health to update and share data it receives with hospitals and nursing homes on communicable diseases.
- Transparency of Violations (S.3185) requires residential health care facilities to disclose in writing to potential residents and their family members the website where a list of violations and other actions taken against the facility can be found.
New York State Senator Samra Brouk (pronounced Sah-mra Br-uuk) represents the incredibly diverse 55th Senate District, stretching from the southern shores of Lake Ontario, through Rochester’s Neighborhood of the Arts, and south to Finger Lakes wine country. It includes the towns of Victor, East Bloomfield, West Bloomfield, Richmond, Bristol, South Bristol, Canadice, and Naples in Ontario County and the towns of Rush, Mendon, Pittsford, Perinton, Penfield, East Rochester, and Irondequoit, plus the east side of the City of Rochester in Monroe County. Senator Brouk serves as the Chair of the Mental Health Committee and sits on Health, Education, Elections, Women’s Issues, Aging, and Alcoholism and Substance Abuse committees.