Twenty-six state Medicaid offices were not able to report the number of critical incidents that occurred at their assisted living communities, according to a report released by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
Among these states, the definition of critical incidents varied, and 14 of these Medicaid agencies did not make this information available to the public. The GAO suggested standardizing Medicaid reporting requirements so that the same information comes from each facility.
Professor of health care policy, David Grabowski, PhD, weighed in on this issue with McKnight’s Senior Living. He agrees that more standardized regulations could shed “further light on what quality is being provided in these communities,” which would allow individuals to make more educated decisions when selecting assisted living facilities.
However, Grabowski cautions that the regulations shouldn’t be too strict such that they strike the appropriate balance between safety and autonomy. “We really want to tailor the regulations to assisted living and recognize that consumers want a high quality of life… They don’t want some of the restrictions that could potentially come with increased regulation.”