On May 5, 2021, the New York State legislature approved two bills with differing requirements related to clinical staffing for hospitals and nursing homes. With a goal of improving both patient and staff safety, as well as patient outcomes, the Governor is expected to sign each bill (A07119 and A00108B) into law soon. This Alert addresses the requirements for nursing homes. Please see a separate Alert here addressing the hospital staffing requirements.
Requirements for Nursing Homes
The nursing home legislation directs the DOH to adopt regulations establishing minimum levels of staffing and a range of civil penalties for non-compliance. However, the legislation itself includes specific standards that nursing homes must have in place by January 1, 2022:
- Daily average staffing hours of 3.5 hours of care per resident per day must be maintained.
- Of this 3.5 hours, at least 2.2 hours must be provided by nursing assistants and at least 1.1 hours must be provided by licensed practical nurses or registered nurses.
Nursing homes will be required to post their staffing information and a summary of the staffing level requirement where visible to residents, their families and staff. DOH may impose civil penalties for violations of the staffing standards beginning on April 1, 2022, but must take into account certain mitigating factors defined in the law.
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