Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services: Nursing Home Deficiencies Explained

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is part of the federal government's Department of Health and Human Services. Because many Medicare and Medicaid recipients are elderly, much of the funding goes to nursing homes or eldercare services. Nursing homes that receive certifications from Medicare undergo an inspection every fifteen months (at a minimum). CMS visits nursing homes and publishes information on any deficiencies found during inspection.

CMS Deficiencies & Citations

Medicare and Medicaid-certified nursing homes are inspected every twelve to fifteen months for health and fire safety regulations. If a complaint is lodged, the facility may be inspected more frequently. When a nursing home fails to meet state and federal minimum standards for care, a deficiency is issued. A citation is issued when a SNF is fined for noncompliance with the state minimum standards. Deficiencies are noted on Medicare's Nursing Home Compare.

It's important to note that deficiencies vary in severity and scope, and many nursing homes receive citations and/or deficiencies. Medicare deficiencies should be evaluated for the number of residents affected along with the seriousness of the infraction. Gilbert Guide only lists Medicare-certified nursing homes; the Medicare deficiency scoring is listed in addition to Gilbert Guide's and/or user reviews in our nursing home listings.