The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is making changes to its Nursing Home Compare website ( In the interim, CMS is freezing the quality measure data and the five-star quality ratings that are currently on the site for a period of six months.

In an age where technology makes everything easier, the federal website Nursing Home compare function makes choosing a nursing home as easy as choosing the latest movie release based on a five-ranking system. The public can compare rankings of nursing homes before they make that all important decision.

Starting April 23, providers that had a bad previous quarter will have six months to mull over their sub-par ranking while the public absorbs this frozen data. By the time the data are unfrozen, new quality measure data from MDS 3.0 will have been collected.

By then, the site also will be giving consumers better opportunities to file complaints against providers with state survey agencies by including links to state complaint websites, and making state fax and phone numbers more prominent. Additionally, CMS will add instances of “enforceable actions” such as civil monetary penalties and denials of payment or new admissions.

Tammy Schroeder

Knudsen Law