Most nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, and long term care facilities accept health insurance payments from Medicare and Medicaid. To be able to receive these types of federal funds, they must agree to follow guidelines set forth by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on a variety of topics. CMS is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. CMS also has the authority to conduct inspections of the facility and their practices.
Approximately 6,000 people are employed with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. A large role of CMS is to conduct inspections of nursing home facilities and look into almost all aspects of their operations, ranging from residents’ health, fire safety, staffing levels, quality of care, billing, HIPAA compliance, and more. In each category surveyed, a nursing home can be rated between 1-5 stars. CMS also strives for complete transparency by allowing prospective residents and their families to compare nursing home facilities in their area in order to make the best possible choice.
Nursing homes nationwide can be compared among the following categories: