Texas Health Care Briefing No. 6
Workforce crisis endangers long term care in Texas
A workforce crisis is rocking the long term care industry in Texas, dragging down ratings and endangering the quality of care for the most vulnerable seniors in your district.
The result: low star ratings from the federal government for Texas nursing homes and anxious families who depend on long term care.
Texas has the 48th lowest nursing home Medicaid reimbursement rate in the nation, according to data from the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). This drives down wages. And in a booming economy like Texas’, that drives dedicated nurses elsewhere. More than 97 percent of certified nursing assistants working in Texas nursing homes left their jobs last year. The turnover rate for registered nurses tops 92 percent.
A 25 percent staff turnover rate for Child Protective Services was among the factors that stirred a legislative crisis during the 85th regular session of the Texas Legislature.
More than 97 percent of certified nursing assistants working in Texas nursing homes left their jobs last year. The turnover rate for registered nurses tops 92 percent.
High turnover rates lead to a reduction of direct care hours and can increase negative outcomes that affect the quality of care as inexperienced staff constantly replace experienced caregivers. It also costs nursing home providers more than $10 million a year extra in overtime wages and agency staffing required to cover empty shifts.
According to CMS, Texas has the 49th worst overall staffing rating rank.
A further analysis of states’ average staffing ratings reveals a strong correlation with a state’s overall quality rating, under the CMS five-star rating system.
“This data simply prove what anyone involved in long term care already knows — a dedicated staff is the key to delivering the kind of long term care you would want for your own family,” said Kevin Warren, president and CEO of the Texas Health Care Association. “The more consistent and dedicated the staff are, the more they understand and are able to effectively respond to each individual’s care needs — reinforcing the long term care profession’s commitment to delivering person-centered care.”