U.S. News and World Report Ranks Top Nursing Homes Nationally

The U.S. News and World Report recently published an analysis of the best and worst nursing homes in the United States. According to the popular magazine, Alaska has the largest percentage of five-star rated facilities in the United States, while Louisiana has the lowest. The report expands on information from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' (CMS) Nursing Home Compare Web site, which houses the new "five-star" rating system.

The new CMS five-star rating system uses three criteria: health inspection performance, nurse staffing levels, and quality performance and improvement measures. The U.S. News system expands on these ratings by creating a multi-tiered approach to deciphering the CMS model. Nursing home search results are grouped based on the number of CMS stars received in each of the three categories, and allow for combined searches. For example, users can search for a CMS five-star rated facility in a certain state or zip code, then refine the search to show only religious facilities or facilities with only Medicare residents, according to the magazine.

Facilities that receive five stars in all three CMS categories are placed on an honor roll. There are currently 27 facilities on the list and information is updated quarterly. For more information on U.S. News and World Report's nursing home list, visit http://health.usnews.com/sections/health/best-nursing-homes/index.html, or see an article about the magazine's report in McKnight's Long Term Care News.

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Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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