Staffing Standards & H. R. 7513

The text of H.R. 7513 is simple. Only a single sentence, H.R. 7513 could change the approach to nursing home staffing standards. This can be viewed as a good or bad thing, depending on how the new House of Representatives proposal is utilized. On one hand, it could be severely detrimental, on the other, it may open the door to deeper discussion and more involvement in the staffing issue as a whole. Here’s what you need to know.

Staffing Standards

A consistent topic on the Gharibian Law blog, staffing standards have been shown to improve nursing home care. However, the ongoing debate surrounds the exact way to implement these rules and the impact it would have on nursing homes and their residents financially. 

“A 2001 study conducted by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) found that nursing home staff should be able to dedicate 4.1 hours per day to each resident. This equals about ‘one nurse for every seven residents on day and evening shifts.’ This amount of care is the minimum to ensure proper hygiene, adequate supervision, and the prevention of bedsores and falls. However, as of a 2019 study, only a third of nursing homes meet that minimum.”

CMS Submits Staffing Standard Rule

The staffing standards proposed by CMS would require “States to report the percent of Medicaid payments for certain Medicaid-covered institutional services that are spent on compensation for direct care workers and support staff.” So it’s no secret that increased staff means more money needed. But that’s not the only problem. Staffing standards might be hard to enforce for survey agencies, difficult to maintain for nursing homes, and a strain on staffing resources in an industry that requires high standards of education and skill. 

With this in mind, let’s look at H.R. 7513.

PC: Georg Arthur Pflueger via Unsplash

H.R. 7513

Very few laws enacted to support staffing standards will be perfect. But H.R. 7513 actually doesn’t necessarily support a national staffing standard. Instead, it is designed to:

“Prohibit the Secretary of Health and Human Services from finalizing a proposed rule regarding minimum staffing for nursing facilities, and to establish an advisory panel on the skilled nursing facility workforce.”

On the face of it, this feels like a step back. However, with the other problems surrounding the staffing issue, the move to “establish an advisory panel on the skilled nursing facility workforce” might prove more useful than a blanket rule that some nursing homes could struggle to meet and maintain. A blanket rule might force the closure of some facilities. 

On the other hand, the “one nurse for every seven residents on day and evening shifts” (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 2001) standard needs to be met to achieve the minimum of quality care. And hopefully sooner rather than later.

To make your opinion regarding H.R. 7513 known to your representatives, visit and contact your representative via email or mail. 

If you or your loved one have been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, call Gharibian Law (877-460-1187) today for a FREE consultation and the best legal representation.