The action plans address issues ranging from resident experience to staff wages and support.
Nursing homes have been under increased scrutiny in the aftermath of the pandemic, particularly regarding their conditions and the quality of care they provide. The Biden administration has made some efforts to address these issues, and most recently, the Moving Forward Nursing Home Quality Coalition has brought forward some suggestions.
Funded by the John A. Hartford Foundation and consisting of more than 120 individuals and organizations advocating for nursing home reform, the coalition has announced a series of action plans to improve nursing homes over the next 12 months. There are nine plans in total, outlining goals and steps to achieve them, as well as noting the partners and infrastructure that would be needed.
"These plans represent reforms that stakeholders can advance to create nursing homes in which lives are nurtured, residents are empowered, and where people want to work," Alice Bonner, PhD, RN, chair of the coalition, said in a statement.
"It's time for providers, policymakers, and advocates to pull the needed levers to achieve broad, sustainable change in nursing homes."
Over the past year, the coalition has worked with long-term care advocates, nursing home leaders and residents, policymakers at the state and federal level, and other advisors to develop action plans. These plans reflect the greatest needs and potential impact on resident quality of life:
- Addressing residents' goals, preferences, and priorities
- Strengthening resident councils
- Improving wages and support for certified nursing assistants (CNAs)
- Expanding CNA career pathways
- Enhancing surveyor training on person-centered care
- Designing a targeted nursing home recertification survey
- Increasing transparency and accountability of ownership data
- Developing a nursing home health information technology readiness guide
- Financing new nursing home models that are smaller with private rooms
Many of the plans are already in progress, including the analysis of more than 10,000 older adults' preferences which will be used to inform the care planning tool to better assess progress toward care goals.
"These plans are long overdue—they are actionable and absolutely imperative declarations of what must happen to ensure quality and safety in the care of people in nursing homes," Terry Fulmer, PhD, RN, FAAN, president of the John A. Hartford Foundation, said in a statement.
"We need the nation to coalesce around these action plans and help make them a reality. Everyone should see themselves as a vital part of the solution to improve our country's nursing homes."
The coalition will also be hosting “Coalition Conversations” in upcoming months, providing more details about the action plans and ways other individuals and organizations can get involved.
“These plans are long overdue—they are actionable and absolutely imperative declarations of what must happen to ensure quality and safety in the care of people in nursing homes.”
Terry Fulmer, PhD, RN, FAAN, president of the John A. Hartford Foundation
The action plans are detailed, thoroughly outlining the goals and efforts needed to be made.
The coalition received input from advocates, nursing home leaders and residents, and policymakers to develop the action plans.