Our View of the Legislature: Nursing Homes

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The mission of the disAbility Law Center of Virginia is to advance independence, choice, and self-determination; protect legal, human and civil rights; and eliminate abuse, neglect and discrimination of people with disabilities through zealous and uncompromising legal advocacy and representation. One of the ways in which we carry out this mission is to assist legislative policymakers in understanding the impact their decisions may have on the disability community, including those who reside in nursing homes.

Tomorrow morning, January 17, 2023, at 8:30, the House Committee on Health, Welfare, and Institutions will consider bills that address appropriate staffing levels in nursing homes. The Chair announced that the Committee will debate the bill with the broadest reach, first, and if that fails, move on to bills that are more specific.

You can watch the hearing, live, by clicking here, and clicking at the tab to the left of that page for “now playing”:

The committee currently has two bills on the topic of nursing home conditions assigned to it, but more bills may ‘drop’ before the meeting on Tuesday. The two that we expect them to be working on are:

HB 1446 (Orrock) sets the staffing levels at 3.08 nursing hours per resident per day, which we believe to be lower than the statewide average currently. The bill also contains a process for sanctions and administrative enforcement.

HB 1564 (Watts) sets the staff levels at 3.5 nursing hours per resident, increasing the expectation to 4.1 hours over a period of several years. This bill also contains a process for sanctions and administrative enforcement.

The disAbility Law Center of Virginia will follow these and other bills throughout the session. We are available to educate policymakers about the potential impact of legislative proposals. Please let us know of any issues that you think we should be following. Contact us at ga@dlcv.org or info@dlcv.org or by calling 1-800-552-3962 or 804-225-2042.