An Examination of Special Focus Facility Nursing Homes

Published in: The Gerontologist, v. 50, no. 3, June 2010, p. 400-407

Posted on RAND.org on June 03, 2010

by Nicholas G. Castle, John Engberg

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PURPOSE: Nursing facilities that are determined to have a greater number of quality problems, more serious problems than average, and a demonstrated pattern of quality problems are included in the Special Focus Facility (SFF) initiative. The purpose of this research was to provide descriptive information on these SFFs and to examine the quality characteristics of these facilities. DESIGN and METHODS: The 1997 through 2008 On-line Survey, Certification And Reporting data and 2003 through 2008 Nursing Home Compare data were used. Descriptive analyses, including t tests, were used to compare the 2 groups of facilities (i.e., SFF nursing facilities and non-SFF nursing facilities). RESULTS: Staffing for registered nurses and nurse aides was lower in SFFs; all citations, quality of care citations, and J, K, and L citations were more frequent in SFFs; and quality indicators such as pressure ulcers and use of antipsychotic drugs were more prevalent in SFFs. IMPLICATIONS: SFF targeting would appear to be accurate with respect to nursing facilities having multiple poor quality issues and chronic poor quality.

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