We are now at the official halfway point of the 2023 legislative session. Both houses must finish the work on the bills that started on their side by midnight tonight, and those bills will then “crossover” to the other house. There is a bill in the House and one in the Senate that deals with staffing levels in nursing facilities.
HB 1446 (Orrock) was heavily amended during a hearing in the Committee on Health, Welfare, and Institutions. The substitute bill sets nursing staffing requirements for certified nursing facilities, imposes administrative sanctions on a certified nursing facility if it does not comply with the staffing requirements, and provides for exemptions to the administrative sanctions under certain circumstances. The bill has a delayed effective date of July 1, 2025.
The bill is a disappointment to many long-term care advocates, who had hoped for higher expectations of staffing ratios. Another disappointment is the very long time allowed for both the development and implementation of regulations and the very long time allowed for corrective action plans when a nursing home is not in compliance.
The bill was approved by the full House and will next be heard in Senate Education and Health. SB 1339, from Senator Barker, is a similar bill. It has been approved by the full Senate and will now go to House Committee on Health, Welfare, and Institutions.
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