submitted by Mike Ksiazek, Stark & Stark, firstname.lastname@example.org
Did you know the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) regularly inspects nursing homes to ensure that proper care is being provided and that each facility is compliant with state and federal regulations?
These DOH on-site inspections are called “surveys,” and include observing care, interviewing residents, reviewing medical charts, and meeting with staff and administrators.
If deficiencies are identified during a survey, the nursing home is required to develop a plan of correction. Serious deficiencies can result in sanctions, including fines, training, or even revocation of the facility’s license.
Afterward, the DOH conducts surprise follow-up inspections to ensure that deficiencies have been corrected. In 2018 alone, the DOH issued 169 sanctions to Pennsylvania nursing homes, and issued fines totaling more than $2.3 million.
Nursing homes’ survey results are publicly available through a searchable database on the Department website. It is important to research nursing homes before selecting one for a family member.