3 Things You May Not Have Known CMS Regulates

CMS Protects Residents’ Welfare

When residents move into assisted living or a nursing home, they want assurance of care. More than that, they their specific needs accounted for and met. You would think that this is a no brainer. Unfortunately, understaffing can overwhelm assisted living facilities and nursing homes . Sometimes, don’t have the proper oversight to ensure proper care of residents. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulate any facilities that accept those coverage. They make sure to oversee aspects of the facility that residents may not even think about.

1. Develop a comprehensive care plan for each resident

Each resident living in a facility is unique. It doesn’t matter if 85% them are in assisted living for the same disease, they each require an individually tailored care plan. CMS ensures that the patient comes first. A resident’s well-being is contingent upon the assisted living facilities developing a detailed plan.

2. Ensure that the resident has the right to choose activities, schedules, and health care

Contrary to popular belief, assisted living facilities and nursing homes do not cater to those completely unable to care for themselves or dying. Residents who utilize assisted living may not have any family able to help them or would like some form of independence while still needing support. Assisted living is not a trap for the elderly where they have no say in their care. In fact, the regulated facilities exist as a form of protection for residents’ rights. They ensure those rights do not get stripped or diminished.

3. Promote each resident’s quality of life

This is probably the vaguest of all regulations overseen by CMS (and for good reason). CMS can define “quality of life” in a myriad of ways which gives them a broader scope of oversight with which to regulate facilities. This protects residents from abuse, neglect, forgotten medications, etc. A resident’s quality of life encompasses so much that essentially, anything done in conflict with a resident’s best interests in mind would fall into this category.

StoreRanker Can Help CMS Keep Residents Safe

Our standard health inspection forms, audits, and checklists will keep you organized. With the ability to share the forms with the facilities you oversee, you can make sure that all facilities are keeping to the outlined standards. Real-time access to all your forms will keep you up to date on the protocols and regulations being enforced across the facilities being overseen. To learn more about StoreRanker contact us today at contact@storeranker.com

What Are the Dangers of Skilled Nursing Facilities?

Skilled Nursing Facilities Are Highly Regulated

Skilled Nursing Facilities accept residents who have Medicare and Medicaid and so follow regulations set by the federal government along with individual state guidelines. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) make sure that Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs) are complying with all rules and regulations at the federal level. It’s very easy for SNFs to fall behind with their resident care if not properly regulated. That leads to dangerous situations for the residents.

The Number of Admissions in SNFsHave Doubled Over the Past Decade

One of the most common dangers of a SNF is an insufficient number of staff to meet resident demand. There are times when a hospital will release a patient into the care of a SNF to continue their recovery. When this happens at an accelerated rate, SNFs easily become overwhelmed. CMS has a regulation in place that requires all SNFs to have a sufficient nursing staff, but unless CMS is keeping on top of their checks then it’s easy for the facilities to slip through the cracks.

The Staff-to-Resident Power Dynamic is Unequal and Must be Carefully Managed

Unfortunately, it’s common to hear the horror stories of abuse and assault in SNFs. Residents expect quality care. However, some staff may find it easy to take advantage of the residents’ dependency. CMS pledges to put patients first and so must ensure that the SNF staffs have adequate vetting and training to ensure proper care of the residents.

SNFs Should Maintain Transparency

If a facility makes a procedural mistake, that can lead to a lot of trouble for both residents and staff. Sometimes it may seem easier for facilities to approve a course of treatment without giving all options proper consideration. In case of a mistake, facilities should have thorough and comprehensive records of all conversations had regarding the patient. While CMS regulations state that all records should be complete and accessible, if anything is omitted from a resident’s chart, it can cause problems down the line.

StoreRanker Can Help CMS Stay on Top of Their Regulatory Comments

Our standard health inspection forms, audits, and checklists will keep you organized. With the ability to share the forms with the facilities you oversee, and maintain real-time access, you can make sure that all facilities are keeping to the outlined standards. To learn more about StoreRanker contact us today at contact@storeranker.com.

5 Questions to Expect from Prospective Residents’ Families

Prospective Residents Require Transparency If You’d Like Their Business

Choosing an assisted living facility is an important choice for the prospective resident and their family. Everyone involved wants to make sure that the facility chosen is the right fit for the resident. No one is going to make the decision lightly and will more often than not involve the families asking each facility any number of questions. The questions make sure that the resident will be treated well and often cover the following subjects:

1. What is your resident-to-staff ratio during day shifts? Night shifts?

Residents’ families need to make sure that their loved on is going to be taken care of. There are horror stories floating around of facilities who don’t have anyone on staff overnight and residents end up neglected.

2. What kind of experience/training does your staff possess?

Families want to make sure that your facility does have the kind of experience necessary to take care of their loved one. Usually, assisted living facilities take in residents who have a little more independence than those who live in nursing homes but that doesn’t mean training and experience are unnecessary.

3. Do you do an assessment prior to admitting a resident?

Families want to make sure that you aren’t biting off more than you can chew. If you take an assessment before admission, you will be fully aware of the prospective resident’s health. Facilities that don’t take an initial assessment may be caught unawares after admission. That can lead to neglect if not adequately trained to handle a specific health issue.

4. Can you describe some of the current residents?

This question can simply be a family’s way of making sure the culture of the facility is in line with their loved one’s desire. It could also be a family’s way of making sure that you have experience with the type of help their loved one will need. Either way, this question could make or break getting new business.

5. What other services are available if a resident’s needs change?

Assisted living facilities are expensive. And it takes a toll on both residents and families if a resident has to bounce from location to location if their needs change. Facilities that are willing to work with a family (or have the resources to do so) will have a leg up in the competition as it will reassure families that their loved one will be taken care of with minimal hassle should other needs arise.

StoreRanker Can Help You Reassure Prospective Residents and Gain New Business

Our standard health inspection forms, audits, and checklists ensure you will have access to the exact standards expected of your facility and will keep you organized. With real time access to your forms, you can make sure that your facility is performing at the level you want, guaranteeing that you are at the top of every potential resident’s list. To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com

The 3 Main Risks to Starting an Assisted Living Facility

Do You Know What an Assisted Living Facility is?

I know It may seem like starting a facility would be simple and end up making you a lot of money. You need to make sure that when researching the assisted living facility start-up process, you are looking up the correct information based on the type of facility you are looking to open. Assisted living facilities can come in a wide variety of occupancies and developments. If you aren’t careful, you may accidentally end up collecting incorrect data. That will lead you to financial disaster. In order to succeed, be aware of the following three risks:

1. Labor Costs

Assisted living facilities mean around the clock care. That’s the whole point. You need to be fully aware of the amount of money you’ll need to pay caretakers. There are obviously other options to minimize costs, such as enlisting family members to help out or bring on volunteers, but caretakers will always be a necessary part of the business.

2. Limited Prospects

Assisted living facilities are expensive for the residents. There’s really no way around it, what with the cost of running the facility in the first place. But the level of expense means that the majority of seniors will not be able to afford to live in a facility. This severely limits the number of residents you will get and the length of time they will be able to stay.

3. Fierce Competition

Several assisted living facilities are often competing for the same few residents. If you want your facility to be the one that families choose over all others, you will have to always be on your game. When compared to other facilities, you want to be ranked first, you want to be desired. If you can’t keep up with the competition, there is no way you will be able to keep your doors open.

StoreRanker Can Help You Mitigate Your Risks

What do you need to do to minimize your starting risks? StoreRanker’s standard health inspection forms, audits, and checklists ensure you will have access to the exact standards expected of your facility and will keep you organized. With real time access to resident feedback and expectations, you can make sure that your facility is performing at the level you want, guaranteeing that you are at the top of every potential resident’s list. To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you retain your “A”, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com

Why Are Seniors Choosing Assisted Living Facilities?

Seniors want just as much independence as anyone else

It’s a pretty common occurrence to see seniors living with their families when it becomes too much for them to live alone. While it may seem like living with family is the right decision in the moment, it can lead to feelings of isolation, resent, or helplessness for those who are being taken care of. Living in a facility allows seniors to live on their own and gain back a sense of self while still being taken care of in whichever ways they need.

You are creating a safe space for residents to inhabit

The most important thing to remember is that your residents are counting on you to keep them safe. While they want to live as independently as possible, there is a reason they are in a facility rather than on their own. Residents expect peace of mind when it comes to emergency response or health standards. In some cases, living in a facility was their way of choosing their safety over full independence. You need to ensure optimal living conditions for each resident, as is expected when they pay to live in your facility.

Living facilities can boost a resident’s quality of life

As we’ve said a couple times already, residents really want to maintain a sense of independence when they move to a facility. Moving to a facility could be a senior’s way of improving family relationships, creating friendships, or alleviating boredom. Many seniors may have negative connotations associated with assisted living facilities. It is your job to make sure that you are presenting a positive atmosphere when potential residents come to visit your facility. Show that their expectations of a better living situation are not misplaced.

StoreRanker can help potential residents choose your facility

What do you need to do to make your assisted living facility desirable? With StoreRanker’s standard health inspection forms, audits, and checklists you will have access to the exact standards expected of your facility. With real time access to resident feedback and expectations, you can make sure that your facility is performing at the level you want, guaranteeing that you are at the top of every potential resident’s list. To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you retain your “A”, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com.

3 Misconceptions About Assisted Living Facilities That Affect Your Bottom Line

We Know You Care About Your Residents

Taking care of those who need a little added help is at the core of your mission statements. We understand that. We also understand that running a facility is a huge job and things fall through the cracks. You have encountered or will encounter potential clients who really don’t have any idea what an assisted living facility entails. Those potential clients will come in with certain expectations. You want to make sure the facility they choose is yours. To do that, you will have to combat the misconceptions about assisted living facilities that are floating around. The following 3 misconceptions can only hurt your business:

1. Only people who are unwell are residents in assisted living facilities

Contrary to popular belief, assisted living facilities exist to keep residents healthy, active, and as independent as possible. There are always going to be medical issues but, as we know, the core strategy of the facilities is to care for people who need little to no extra medical attention. You need to make sure that you are keeping on top of the image you would like your facility to maintain. If not, you  may find yourself with confused potential clients.

2. Assisted living facilities are the same thing as a health care provider

This misconception piggy backs off the first and creates a dangerous situation for you and your residents. If a resident happens to be one of the clients with a medical condition, it’s natural to expect the facility to provide care. The problem with providing care is that assisted living facilities don’t require medical personnel on staff. If you are accepting residents who require medical care beyond what you have provided in the past, you need to make sure to stay organized and regulation compliant. If you don’t, you may find yourself in a lawsuit accused of neglect.

3. Assisted living facilities are highly regulated

People tend to confuse assisted living centers with nursing homes. Nursing homes tend to get the bulk of their funding from federal programs. Therefore, they’re regulated at both the state and federal levels. Assisted living centers receive private funding and so only deal with state level regulations. Each state can impose its own restrictions and standards, which can lead to inadequate training and staffing. Ensuring that you are up to date on your state’s regulations. Preparation will lead to a boost in revenue as potential clients will trust your facility.

StoreRanker Can Help You Overcome Misconceptions

Ensuring quality care of your residents will boost your revenue stream. With StoreRanker’s standard health inspection forms, audits, and checklists you will have access to the exact standards expected of your facility. With real time access to your rules and regulations, you won’t have to worry about getting behind your resident care. These standardized forms are easy to use and easily completed, which means no overly complicated training to retain your good standards and avoid neglecting residents.  To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you retain your “A”, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com.

5 Common Assisted Living Facility Violations to Look Out For

Your Residents Expect Excellent Care

Residents and their loved ones expect top-notch care from assisted living facilities. It’s what they’re paying for. We like to believe that we are providing excellent care to those who are living in facilities. However, keeping track of everything that needs to be done can be overwhelming. Those who live in the facilities are counting on you to keep them healthy and safe but there may be moments where your standards are less reliable than they should be simply because the alternative is easier. Here are the 5 most common Assisted living facility violations to look out for:

1. Administration of Medication

A very common mistake that facilities make is failing to dispose of expired medication. This is a lapse in organization that may not seem like a big deal at the time but can cause trouble for residents if not corrected.

2. Daily Care

Violations sometimes take place when caretakers lapse in the residents’ daily routines or forget a step along the way. This could lead to a lack a cleanliness or hygiene that will snowball into larger health issues for the residents.

3. Food Quality

Just like any restaurant or other business, if you aren’t storing or preparing food in accordance to the standard you will be cited with a violation. Something as simple as putting food near a cleaning product will cost you.

4. Employee Health

You need to be aware that some of your residents have weakened immune systems.  If you and your employees don’t keep track of when you need to vaccinate yourselves to protect your residents, you will have a much larger problem on your hands.

5. Emergency Plans

Always have emergency plans in place! Obviously, natural disasters or other crises can happen at any time. You should make sure to have disaster drills scheduled so everyone in the facility will be prepared when the time comes. To be unprepared means getting a citation.

StoreRanker Can Help You Keep Your Residents Happy

With StoreRanker’s standard audit forms, you will have access to the exact standards expected of you come time for your inspections. You will have real time access to your health and safety standards and To Do lists at any moment. These standardized audit forms are easy to use and easily completed, which means no overly complicated training for your employees to keep your residents and their families satisfied. To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help maintain a good relationship with your residents, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com

Internet Transparency Will Lead to a Decrease In Your Restaurant’s Revenue

Your Customers Always Want to be In the Know

It’s normal for customers to want as much information as possible about the places they patronize. Why wouldn’t they? They’re going to be spending their money. Companies that exist to give information to the consumer public have taken note of this trend and are beginning to adjust accordingly. You don’t want to lose out on a large chunk of revenue from potential customers. So, make sure all the information out in the open will only drum up positive publicity for your restaurant.

Yelp Has Added Health Inspection Scores To Their Interface

Over the past few months, Yelp has launched a new aspect to their online presence. No longer are they simply publishing user generated reviews and basic information about restaurants. They have begun working with local governments and health inspection services to display restaurant health scores to their users. This is definitely an added benefit for those restaurants that have managed to retain their “A”. It’s one more piece of positive publicity to drive up their revenue.

Why Retaining Your “A” is More Important Than Ever

The addition of health inspection scores on Yelp is an obstacle for those of you who may have gotten a less than stellar letter grade last time around. Before Yelp added this feature to their interface, customers were going off customer reviews alone. As we know, you can have stellar customer reviews and amazing food and still have gotten dinged enough points to drop you down to a “B”. So, potential customers would have to make their decision about patronizing your restaurant after having those great reviews on their mind. Odds are, they would be more likely to overlook the lack of an “A” at that point. Yelp has taken that moment of decision away from customers. Now, you have to make sure to get and retain your “A” if you want potential customers to even think about eating at your restaurant.

StoreRanker Can Help You Stay Ahead of Transparency Trend

Retaining the “A” of your restaurant will maintain your revenue stream. With StoreRanker’s standard health inspection forms, you will have access to the exact standards expected of you come time for your health inspection. StoreRanker gives you real time access to your health and safety standards at any moment. These standardized audit forms are easy to use and easily completed. You won’t need overly complicated training to retain your good standing and avoid losing customers.  To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you retain your “A”, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com.

Top 5 Minor Violations That Will Cost You Your “A”

Infractions You May Not Even Think About Can Lower Your Grade

Running a restaurant is challenging work. If you and your employees aren’t properly trained, minor health & safety rules may start falling through the cracks. When working in a fast-paced environment, it’s easy to fall back into patterns of carelessness. While it might not seem like a big deal at the time to violate a very minor health & safety rule, it’s easy for little violations to build up. If the violations build to a certain amount, you are pretty much guaranteeing losing your “A” grade until your next inspection. These are the top 5 minor infractions that could end up costing you your “A”:

  1. Food is not in good condition or safely stored.

    Are you making sure that all food is stored a safe distance away from cleaning supplies? It might not seem like a big deal at the time to have a sealed container of food next to a bottle of bleach. I mean, it’s not like you’re mixing the two together, right? But this is a practice that will surely get you docked a few points during your next inspection.

  2. Adequate hand-washing facilities are not supplied or not accessible.

    No one likes refilling a paper towel dispenser. It’s a chore. It’s also something that your restaurant should get in the habit of doing. If a health inspector came by and saw a lack of paper towels, that would be a ding against you. It’s easier to simply get in the habit of knowing when more towels are needed.

  3. Toxic substances are not properly used, identified, or stored.

    When you transfer a cleaning solution from its master container into a spray bottle, are you labeling the bottle? This might not even be a safety practice that’s on your radar. You refilled the bottle so you know what’s in it, right? If that solution is used incorrectly because of improper labelling, it will lead to a slew of bigger problem down the line. Those problems might lead to a bigger violation that could put your “A” in jeopardy.

  4. There is an issue with rodents, birds, insects, or animals.

    We’re not talking about an infestation here. That would be a different scenario entirely. What we’re trying to avoid is the appearance of a few flies or a single cockroach. That could be as simple as keeping to doors to the restaurant shut and maintaining a level of cleanliness to prevent them all together.

  5. Employees are not following proper protocol regarding eating, drinking, tobacco, or cell phone use.

    Old habits are hard to break. It’s commonplace at this point for people to want their phones on them at all times, even when the situation might be inappropriate. Cell phones are very hard to sanitize should not be welcome in most kitchens. Wherever those cell phones end up resting will end up contaminated. To avoid points docked during your next inspection, make sure you have already normalized proper procedures and designated areas of use for employees.

    StoreRanker Can Help You Minimize Minor Violations

No one wants their restaurant to lose their “A” because of a few minor violations. With StoreRanker’s standardized health inspection forms, you can ensure that you are maintaining your restaurant’s health consistently. With checklists and audits, you’re able to make sure nothing small slips through the cracks. These standardized electronic forms are easily completed and accessible to managers through our mobile app, enabling real time access to restaurant safety across the board. To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you retain your “A”, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com.

3 Misconceptions About Health Inspections that can Cost You Revenue

You Should Always be Striving Toward Retaining your “A”

We all want our restaurants to succeed. Our businesses are our pride and joy. We have poured a lot of ourselves into these ventures. The first thing on your list should always be the health inspection. Your restaurant will undergo these at least once a year. Without that “A” in your window, you will see a guaranteed decline in revenue at your restaurant. The following misconceptions often overlooked by owners and customers alike:

  1. Restaurant owners and staff believe they know what the standards are for health inspections.

    This is usually not the case. Owners and/or staff may not have the proper training to know every single item the health inspector will go over during the visit. Anyone has the ability to open a restaurant or work in one. This leads to problems for the restaurant down the line. If you don’t know the exact standards and expectations of the health and safety of your restaurant, your chances of being knocked down a letter grade increase exponentially.

  2. If you only have one violation, you will not get knocked down a letter grade.

    In reality, a single violation can absolutely knock you down an entire letter. Health inspections use a points system. Crucial items have a larger points value than something less critical. For example, waste disposal takes precedent over building structure and denotes a larger weight of the grade to reflect that. If docked on a single crucial item, even if everything else is perfect, you will not retain your “A”.

  3. A restaurant that lacks an “A” is unsafe and shouldn’t be patronized.

We all have negative connotations of restaurants that have anything less than an “A” on display. Restaurants fix most, if not all, violations immediately upon the inspector point them out. Most customers don’t know, or don’t care to know, this fact. Violations could be as simple as tossing out food that was not at a safe temperature. These violations don’t mean that the restaurant is unsafe to patron, only that they needed to make adjustments. Customers don’t see the inner workings of the inspection and so are only going by what they have displayed in front of them.

StoreRanker Can Help You Overcome Health Inspection Misconceptions

Retaining the “A” of your restaurant will maintain your revenue stream. With StoreRanker’s standard health inspection forms, you will have access to the exact standards expected of you come time for your health inspection. You will also have real time access to your health and safety standards at any moment. These standardized audit forms are easy to use and easily completed, which means no overly complicated training to retain your good standing and avoid losing customers.  To learn more about StoreRanker and how we can help you retain your “A”, contact us today at contact@storeranker.com.