CYMI: Bipartisan Group Of U.S. Senators Introduce Resolution To Overturn Federal Staffing Mandate For Nursing Homes / Senators ask the VA to study the mandate’s impact on veterans

In case you missed it, Senator James Lankford (R-OK) and Senator Joe Manchin (I-WV) introduced a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution of disapproval to overturn the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) federal staffing mandate for nursing homes. The mandate, which more than 90 percent of nursing homes would be unable to meet, threatens to displace nearly 300,000 residents. The resolution follows the U.S. House version introduced last month by U.S. Representatives Michelle Fischbach (MN-07) and Greg Pence (IN-06).
In a press release, Senator Lankford called the mandate “overly broad and unrealistic," while underscoring the impact on rural communities where access to care is already scarce. A bipartisan group of 29 senators joined the resolution, demonstrating the growing opposition on Capitol Hill against the misguided policy. The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) praised Senators Lankford and Manchin for introducing the resolution and their leadership:
“We applaud the introduction of the Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution against the Administration's staffing mandate in the U.S. Senate and appreciate the support and leadership of Senators Lankford and Manchin," said Clif Porter, Senior Vice President of Government Relations for AHCA/NCAL. “Whether through legislation or direct outreach to the Administration, the concern that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have shown demonstrates that this outrageous and unrealistic rule must be overturned. This impossible mandate threatens access to care for seniors across the country, and we urge members of Congress to take action. Let's work together on more meaningful ways to boost our nursing home workforce and improve quality care."
Also this week, Senator Angus King (I-ME) and Senator Kevin Cramer (R-ND) sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Veterans' Affairs, expressing their concern about the mandate's impact on veterans and requesting the department produce a report on the potential impact of the mandate. The senators wrote: 
“We all want our veterans, older adults, and disabled populations served by long-term care facilities to have adequate staffing to meet their needs. Considering the majority of long-term care facilities nationwide would currently be deemed out of compliance with this rule, and are already struggling to hire and retain staff while on the precipice collectively of needing to spend billions of dollars more per year, we have serious concerns the industry will realistically be able to meet the goals of the Rule, let alone prevent massive widespread closures."
AHCA/NCAL held their annual Congressional Briefing this week, which brought more than 600 long term and post-acute care professionals to Capitol Hill to advocate for the industry's legislative priorities – chief among them stopping the mandate from being implemented. The long term care sector will continue to sound the alarm over the potential consequences of this one-size-fits-all rule and ensure every senior has access to the high-quality care they need and deserve.
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