CMS Freezes Five-Star Inspection Domain, Releases New FAQs, and Posts New Staffing Data for Every Facility (4/20)

By CMS - April 28, 2020

Ref: QSO-20-28-NH

DATE: April 24, 2020

TO: State Survey Agency Directors

FROM: Director Quality, Safety & Oversight Group

SUBJECT: Nursing Home Five Star Quality Rating System updates, Nursing Home Staff Counts, and Frequently Asked Questions

Memorandum Summary

• CMS is committed to taking critical steps to ensure America’s nursing homes are prepared to respond to the threat of the COVID-19.

• Nursing Home Compare website & Nursing Home Five Star Quality Rating System: We are announcing that the inspection domain will be held constant temporarily due to the prioritization and suspension of certain surveys, to ensure the rating system reflects fair information for consumers.

• Posting of surveys: CMS will post a list of the surveys conducted after the prioritization of certain surveys, and their findings, through a link on the Nursing Home Compare website.

• Nursing Home Staff: CMS is publishing a list of the average number of nursing and total staff that work onsite in each nursing home, each day. This information can be used to help direct adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) and testing to nursing homes.

• Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): We are releasing a list of FAQs to clarify certain actions we have taken related to visitation, surveys, waivers, and other guidance.