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DPH Approves Staffing Waivers for Hundreds of Nursing Homes


The Department of Public Health (DPH) has posted lists of the California nursing homes that it has approved to staff at levels below California’s minimum staffing requirements. Nursing homes with approved waivers are allowed to staff below the daily minimum 3.5 direct care service hours per resident requirement or the minimum 2.4 certified nursing assistant (CNA) hours per resident requirement, or both.

More than half of California nursing homes sought staffing waivers. DPH has created two types of waivers: the workforce shortage waiver and the patient needs waiver.

As of January 31, 2019, DPH had granted workforce shortage waivers to 117 nursing homes. DPH has not posted any information on the nursing homes that were denied waivers, but 344 skilled nursing facilities originally applied for this waiver.

As of March 1, 2019, DPH had granted patient needs waivers to 245 nursing homes. 391 facilities applied for this waiver, which CANHR has challenged because it is not legislatively authorized.

CANHR remains concerned that DPH’s excessive focus on waiving California’s minimum staffing requirements is harming residents’ ability to receive needed care.