Sen. Bob Casey and Sen. Pat Toomey have introduced the Nursing Home Reform Modernization Act bill.

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pennsylvania’s senators have introduced legislation aimed at nursing home reform.

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More than 178,000 nursing home residents and workers nationwide have died of COVID-19 over the past year of the pandemic.

Democratic Sen. Bob Casey and Republican Sen. Pat Toomey say their bill would provide oversight and inspections at more of the nation’s poorest-performing nursing homes.

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The senators say this Nursing Home Reform Modernization Act would expand on the Special Focus Facility program, allowing for additional oversight and enforcement as well as technical assistance and education at facilities that fall below standards.

According to the senators’ offices, right now, there are more than 500 nursing facilities across the country that consistently fail federal safety requirements. But of those less than 100 are chosen to participate in the Special Focus Facility program.

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The Nursing Home Reform Modernization Act would also look to increase educational resources for sub-standard nursing homes and form an independent Advisory Council that would look into what nursing homes most need improvements, Casey and Toomey say of their bill.