Nursing Homes and Facilities

Goal

Make Nursing Homes safer, and less needed.

Everyone deserves to live a full life with dignity. However, Covid-19 has robbed many of that right — in just over five months more than 5,600 people have died in 379 Massachusetts nursing homes, 88% of the 429 homes in the state, and the toll increases daily. These deaths comprise 15% of all nursing home residents in the state and nearly 66% of all Covid-19 deaths in the Commonwealth. Over 24,000 nursing home residents and staff have tested positive. The mortality rate of infected nursing home residents is more than 22%, three times the rate of the general population.

There can no longer be any doubt about the urgency of the need for comprehensive change to the nursing home model as the predominant institution for long-term care of seniors and people with disabilities. Not only is a fundamental restructuring of facility operations necessary, but as a coalition of advocates with first-hand experience, we are here to say it can be done. New public policies are urgently required to promote community-based services while improving the conditions inside existing facilities. These places remain far too vulnerable at a time when the threat of a Covid-19 resurgence remains high.

Facts and Issues

Assisted Living is another type of facility that is not highly regulated.

Legislation

See the State Legislative Endorsements page and the Federal Legislative Endorsements page for a list of all Dignity Alliance supported bills.

News

Perspective of a Nursing Home Resident – Penny Shaw

Penny Shaw is a Dignity Alliance Massachusetts participant.  She has lived in a nursing home in Massachusetts for about two ...

2024-02-20 Spotlight: Owner Incentives and Performance in Healthcare: Private Equity Investment in Nursing Homes

National Bureau of Economic ResearchBy Atul Gupta, Sabrina T. Howell, Constantine Yannelis & Abhinav GuptaFebruary 2021, revised August 2023 Owner ...

2024-02-06 Spotlight: Harmful Findings at Bear Mountain Nursing Facility

DLC Report Finds Harmful Lack of Proper Care for Patients at Bear Mountain Nursing Facility in Worcester Disability Law Center, ...

2024-01-30 Spotlight: Fernald School: Waltham is letting a historic property fall apart

*Boston Globe, January 29, 2024By The Editorial BoardThe city bought the 190-acre property in part using money from the state ...

Private Equity

The toxic effects that Private Equity investments have had on healthcare, caregiving, durable medical equipment and nursing homes is a ...

2024-01-18 Spotlight: Scrutinize private equity’s involvement in health care

*Boston Globe, January 17, 2024By The Editorial Board Higher prices, worse outcomes don’t serve patients or providers. When Pamela Daly ...

Positions and Actions

  • January 12, 2021Audit Nursing Home Complaints – A letter was sent to State Auditor Suzanne Bump, asking for a follow up on the audit of nursing home complaints from July, 1, 2016 – June 30, 2018. DAM is interested in the effects of the recommended increase in investigative staff, as well as the effects on nursing home complaints during Covid-19. Among the topics of concern is the quality of care delivery due to staffing shortages and pandemic related issues, no onsite presence of public officials and family members, possible systemic delays of investigations, information on complaint backlogs, cross-reference information on deaths, efforts to get residents back into the community, data on how many residents cannot provide written informed consent and have no guardian or health care proxy agent, and the overuse and misuse of psychotropic medications. The detailed letter is available at DAM Auditor Letter on Nursing Home Complaints.docx.