Certified nurse aides do not get much education or experience before working at a South Carolina nursing home. Now CMS has waived the training because the need for more direct-care workers during the pandemic. A rule that requires new aides work at least four months without becoming certified has been waived by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
The staffing decision was a part of a set of blanket waivers as part of a wish list for corporate for profit operators. McKnight’s Long-Term Care News Flash Survey showed that nearly half of respondents (48%) said they had workers “calling in sick due to or exhibiting signs of COVID-19.” Infection and death rates are expected to grow by harrowing amounts over the next two weeks.
The agency noted that facilities still will have to ensure that aides are competent to provide nursing and nursing-related services. They’re also still requiring operators to ensure that nurse aides are able to demonstrate competency in skills and techniques necessary for residents’ needs, as identified through resident assessments, and described in the plan of care.”