Eye on Nursing Homes – Minimum Direct Care and Staff Funding Requirements Approved by NYS Legislature

April 7, 2021

By: Raul A. Tabora, Jr.

The New York State Legislature has passed budgetary language which authorizes across the board regulations requiring that nursing homes reinvest 70% of revenues on direct resident care with 40% to be spent on “resident-facing staffing.” The provisions would enact a new section 2828 to the Public Health Law and is expected to be signed by the governor who had originally included similar provisions in his budget. (See Bill available here.)  

The legislation also provides that nursing homes which have profits in excess of 5% or do not meet the required minimum levels of direct care and resident-facing staffing funding requirements will be subject to forfeiture of such profits to the State of New York. Further analysis will be addressed by Bond’s Long Term Care practice in the coming week.

Exception to these rules are given to nursing homes serving medically fragile children, HIV/AIDS residents, facilities caring for residents who require behavioral intervention, neurodegenerative services and other specialized populations as deemed appropriate by the New York State Health Commissioner. Waivers would also be authorized on a case-by-case basis based on unexpected or exceptional circumstances which prevent compliance. 

Finally, the bill mandates that the Health Commissioner seek amendments to the Medicaid state plan, and waivers from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services may be necessary to implement the required regulations.

Should you have any questions on this or any related guidance, please feel free to contact any of the attorneys in our Health Care practice for additional information.