Unsurprisingly, a study from UPenn researchers reveals that the use of skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) significantly declined during the pandemic. The facilities were death sentences for too many vulnerable adults. SNF spending for care also declined.
Featured in the Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, the study showed SNF use declined from an average of 324 SNF admissions per 100,000 enrollees in 2019 to 167 per 100,000 by October 2020, or 51% of the pre-pandemic rate.
Reducing SNF utilization is a common target to reduce health care spending. The pandemic accelerated this trend. Infection control is still a dangerous problem.
The Office of Inspector General released a list of its top 25 ignored safety recommendations of 2020. CMS’ oversight of nursing home infection control compliance remained No. 1. Infection prevention and control decencies have been among the top survey citations for nursing home providers this year.