Journal Article

Staff Assist: A Resource to Improve Nursing Home Quality and Staffing

Nicholas G. Castle

in The Gerontologist

Published on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America

Volume 51, issue 5, pages 714-722
Published in print October 2011 | ISSN: 0016-9013
Published online May 2011 | e-ISSN: 1758-5341 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/geront/gnr038
Staff Assist: A Resource to Improve Nursing Home Quality and Staffing

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Purpose: This study describes the creation and use of a web-based resource, designed to help nursing homes implement quality improvements through changes in staffing characteristics. Design and Methods: Information on staffing characteristics (i.e., staffing levels, turnover, stability, and use of agency staff), facility characteristics (e.g., ownership, size), and quality (i.e., quality measures [QMs]) coming from 2,946 nursing homes were utilized in a simulation analysis. The simulation was used to predict changes in each of 11 QMs, based on changes in staffing characteristics for individual nursing homes using the web-tool. Results: The website was visited 2,347 times in the first 6 months after it became operational. Evidence would suggest that it was useful in informing nursing home management of the importance of staffing and facilitating staffing changes; moreover, active users of the website showed improvements in quality, with an average of 5 of the 11 QMs improving by more than 1%. Implications: The web-based resource may be a feasible low-cost model that can be replicated, to provide further information for other areas of quality improvement in nursing homes.

Keywords: Nursing homes; Workforce issues; Management

Journal Article.  4876 words. 

Subjects: Geriatric Medicine ; Biological Sciences ; Psychology ; Gerontology and Ageing

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