U.S. News & World Report today released its annual Best Nursing Homes ratings, which offer important guidance to families and healthcare providers caring for people in need of a nursing home. The 2012 ratings recognize top-rated nursing homes in all 50 states.
In addition, U.S. News released an Honor Roll of 39 nursing homes that earned the highest possible ratings in all four quarters of 2011. This year, three states—Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York—have three or more nursing homes on the Honor Roll. States with two homes on the list are: California, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Montana, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Washington.
U.S. News’s evaluation of nursing homes is based on data from Nursing Home Compare, a consumer website run by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The government agency sets and enforces standards for nursing homes (defined as facilities or portions of facilities enrolled in Medicare or Medicaid that provide 24-hour nursing care and other medical services). Homes earn an overall rating of one to five stars, as well as up to five stars in each of three underlying categories: health inspections, nurse staffing, and quality of care.
U.S. News updates each nursing home’s ratings data quarterly. To earn a place on the 2012 Honor Roll, a home had to receive perfect five-star ratings in 2011 in all categories for all four quarters.
“We also display factors like religious affiliation and proximity to family members, because these are important to many families as well,” says Avery Comarow, Health Rankings Editor. He notes that more than 3 million Americans will spend part of 2012 in a nursing home.