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A07119 Summary:

COSPNSRGottfried, Jacobson, Zebrowski, Lunsford, Rosenthal L, Perry, Burdick, Abinanti, Pretlow, Weinstein, Barron, Simon, Dinowitz, Bichotte Hermelyn, Santabarbara, Kelles, Rivera JD, Steck, Anderson, Ramos, Darling, Richardson, Burke
Add 2895-b, Pub Health L
Provides for standard minimum nursing home staffing levels by regulations promulgated by the commissioner of health.
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A07119 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
SPONSOR: Gunther
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public health law, in relation to establishing stan- dard nursing home staffing levels   PURPOSE: To establish appropriate and safe staffing standards for nurses in nurs- ing homes.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section one directs the Commissioner of Health (COH) to establish regu- lations for standards related to nursing home minimum staffing levels with the goal of promoting the highest possible health and wellbeing of residents in nursing homes. Compliance would be determined on a quarter- ly basis using existing staffing documentation required by the federal government. The COH would be directed to establish regulations on civil penalties for noncompliance. DOH would have to consider mitigating factors such as disasters and emergencies, as well as frequency and nature of non-compliance, and labor supply shortages when issuing penal- ties. At a minimum, nursing home staffing standards would have to include 3.5 hours of nursing care per resident per day. Of this 3.5 hours at least 2.2 would need to be provided by nursing assistants and at least 1.1 would need to be provided by licensed practical nurses (LPNs) or registered nurses (RNs). Section 2 establishes a severability clause. Section 3 establishes an immediate effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: The recent COVID-19 outbreak has brought attention to the level of care being provided to residents in nursing homes, but the truth is many residents in these facilities have not been receiving a sufficient level of services, needed for them to thrive, for years. This legislation would address this long overdue issue by enhancing staffing in nursing homes. It would establish a baseline level of care for every resident in a nursing home as well as a mechanism for enforcement of these stand- ards. This language will ensure that residents of nursing homes are receiving a minimum level of care necessary to help them lead happier and healthier lives. In addition to residents, it is also important to consider the staff providing the care. Many nurses in nursing homes are overworked and underpaid for the services they provide. This bill will also help to support this critical nursing workforce. It will require nursing homes to have their staff focus on the care and services their staff were trained to provide and by improving the quality and health of residents will foster a better working environment for nurses in these facilities.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2019-20: A2954 reported to Ways & Means/S1032 referred to Health 2017-18: A1532 referred to Codes/S3330 referred to Health 2015-16: A8580A passed Assembly/S782 referred to Health 1013-14: A6571 reported to Ways & Means/S3691A referred to Health 2011-12: A921 reported to Ways & Means/S4553 reported to Finance 2009-10: A11015 held in Ways & Means/57974 referred to Health   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately
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