Aging Committee

JOINT FAVORABLE REPORT

Bill No.:

SB-139

Title:

AN ACT CONCERNING NOTIFICATION OF FINANCIAL STABILITY OF NURSING HOME FACILITIES AND MANAGED RESIDENTIAL COMMUNITIES TO PATIENTS AND RESIDENTS.

Vote Date:

3/8/2012

Vote Action:

Joint Favorable Change of Reference to Public Health

PH Date:

2/28/2012

File No.:

SPONSORS OF BILL:

Aging Committee

REASONS FOR BILL:

To provide consumers with full disclosure of the current financial status of the nursing home facility or managed residential community so that consumers can make an informed decision about admission.

RESPONSE FROM ADMINISTRATION/AGENCY:

Debra Polun, Legislative Director, Connecticut Commission on Aging

“This proposal, a priority of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman, empowers nursing home and managed residential community residents, potential residents and their families by providing them with information about the facilities' placement into receivership or application for bankruptcy. The Commission on Aging supports all efforts to educate and inform individuals who are seeking long-term care services.

…Last year this bill passed two committees and the full Senate without a “no” vote. CoA urges that the bill become law this session.”

Nancy Shaffer, State Long Term Care Ombudsman

“…For many reasons it is difficult for individuals to move into a nursing home facility or managed residential community, it is a serious and life-changing decision. In Connecticut's long-term care environment it is not uncommon for nursing homes to declare bankruptcy or to be placed in state-receivership. At any given time over the past six years at least one home in the state has been in a state of financial instability as defined by bankruptcy reorganization or state receivership. When residents and families learn after an admission that the home is in financial difficulty it can be very unsettling and disturbing. As consumers, they often tell us they feel misled. Informed decision-making provides the best opportunity to make the right personal decision. This legislative proposal promotes informed choice prior to admission.”

NATURE AND SOURCES OF SUPPORT:

Deborah Chernoff, Communications Director, New England Health Care Employees Union, District 1199, SEIU

“…We strongly favor greater financial transparency in the nursing home industry generally, given the critical role of public monies in supporting long term care, especially in the for-profit sector. We support the right of individuals to have access to all pertinent information, especially when making an important decision that may entail spending down assets and/or selling a home. It is only right that potential residents have access to information about financial viability, especially because we have seen the traumatic effects on residents and families of unexpected closures and the consequent dislocations.”

Mag Morelli, President, Leading Age Connecticut

“LeadingAge Connecticut supports the concept of transparency and informed decision making and we do not object this bill.”

Russell Schwartz, Legislative Committee Chair, Connecticut Association of Health Care Facilities (CAHCF)

“We can also support the reasonable provisions in this bill requiring that residents and prospective residents be notified when a nursing home is in receivership or facing bankruptcy.”

Brian Capshaw, Statewide Coalition of Presidents of Resident Councils

“…Residents and their family members need to know the status of the facility in order to be able to make informed decisions about their living arrangements.”

NATURE AND SOURCES OF OPPOSITION:

None expressed

Reported by: Amy Linskey/Art Mongillo

Date: 3/9/12