Payroll Data Shows Reality of SNF Staffing Problem

Older adult gripping a ball with another person gently holding his arm.

The August issue of McKnight’s Long-Term Care News reported on the results of a recent study conducted by Harvard and Vanderbilt medical schools on nursing home staffing. The researchers found “75% of U.S. nursing homes do not meet federal expectations for registered nurse staffing.” Also noted in the article: “70% of facilities self-reported higher total direct staffing levels than could be verified in the now-standard Payroll-Based Journal.”

With many states experiencing a nurse shortage in long-term care facilities, declining quality of care for residents is a growing concern. Allegations of neglect and abuse have increased as the ratio of staff to resident has decreased. In short, low staffing increases the risk for regulatory actions and litigation.

Facilities should be better prepared to defend themselves against these claims. They can start by understanding and using their publicly documented payroll-based journal data. This is the same information plaintiffs use to evaluate cases and create negative staffing narratives.

How Excelas Can Help

Excelas extracts and interprets thousands of lines of payroll data entries from the CMS website to create a useful tool for gaining insight into your facility’s operations. Read more about our Staffing Scorecard for nursing homes.

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