Senator James Skoufis (D-Woodbury) announced that a package of bills he authored to increase protections and accountability within nursing homes and long-term care facilities has passed through the Senate’s Health Committee.
These bills were based on over 40 hours of testimony at legislative hearings co-chaired by Skoufis focusing on COVID-19 in residential health care facilities. Among many other devastating issues, the pandemic made it apparent that nursing homes and other congregate living facilities were especially vulnerable and severely ill-equipped to protect against the spread of COVID-19.
Skoufis’ legislation focuses on creating accountability and transparency - both within nursing homes as well as the Department of Health - while increasing safety standards. The goal of these bills is to enhance inspections related to infection control, create clear expectations for PPE, staffing, and reporting, as well as ensure that all relevant stakeholders, including residents and employees, are included in safety decision-making within facilities.
“Absolutely nothing can ever replace the devastating losses that thousands of New Yorkers faced, but we can create a safer future by implementing laws that protect residents and their families,” said Skoufis. “That’s exactly what this legislation does and it is what I will continue fighting for as we get these and other important bills across the finish line.”
Skoufis expects this legislation along with additional long-term care facility reforms to come to the Senate floor for a full vote this session.