State lawmakers today heard from testifiers about implementation of COVID guidelines for nursing homes. Earlier this month, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services or CMS issued a rule that requires most Medicare and Medicaid certified providers and suppliers to vaccinate staff members within 60 days. Kari Thurlow with LeadingAge Minnesota testified…

“This is a potential powder keg with a very short fuse for long-term care. We face a scenario where we don’t have enough workers to serve the seniors in our settings, and despite our pleas for help, over the last several months, there are no concrete solutions either at the state or the federal levels, to help us solve our unprecedented workforce crisis.”

The rule requires providers to develop policies and procedures to ensure that all staff are fully vaccinated for COVID-19. Thurlow says Minnesota could lose thousands of nursing home employees with immediate action to implement solutions.