NURSING HOMES: Time to Fix the Problem
"It is hard to imagine a more appropriate time for California, with its healthy economy and aging population, to finally face up to the sorry state of its nursing homes," a Fresno Bee editorial asserted Friday. The piece notes, "The status quo is not acceptable. And it is getting worse." Gov. Gray Davis (D) balked at the cost of a bill that would have increased staffing and improved training, vetoing the measure earlier this year despite statistics showing that nursing home bankruptcies involve 19% of beds in Sacramento County, 64% in Humboldt County, 80% in Amador County and 100% in Yuba and Plumas counties. While the editors note that it "is difficult to conclude how much these bankruptcies are attributable to inadequate government payments or ... poor management," the result is the same: rising concerns over quality of care. The editorial concludes, "Financially unhealthy homes don't translate into healthier residents, particularly senior citizens who are sometimes too frail, too sick, too alone to demand and receive appropriate care" (11/12).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.