How to Choose a Nursing Home – U.S. News and World Report – 02/22/13
Health inspections, nurse staffing, and quality of medical care determined each home’s star ratings.
An estimated 3.3 million Americans will live in the nation’s nearly 16,000 nursing homes during 2013. That number translates to 1 in 7 people ages 65 and up, and more than 1 in 5 of those 85 and older. They and their families will want and need a way to find a source of the best possible care. For many, it won’t be easy.
To help them, U.S. News has collected meaningful data and ratings about nearly every nursing facility in the United States, and built from them a searchable database designed to highlight the highest-rated homes likely to meet each user’s needs.
The data behind Best Nursing Homes come from Nursing Home Compare, a website run by the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. CMS sets and enforces standards for nursing homes enrolled in Medicare or Medicaid, as most are. The agency also collects information from states and individual homes and assigns each home (other than a few too new to have built up enough months of data) a rating of one to five stars in each of three categories: state-conducted health inspections, nursing and physical therapy staffing, and quality of medical care. The ratings are combined to produce an overall rating of one to five stars.