S.B. 318

                                                                                                                                           By: Deuell

                                                                                                                                  Human Services

                                                                                                       Committee Report (Unamended)






Research has shown a link between the quality of care in nursing homes and direct care staffing levels.  In Texas, the Nursing Facility Direct Care Staff Enhancement Program, implemented in 2000, allows facilities the option to receive additional reimbursement to be used to meet specific, agreed upon, direct care staffing and spending requirements.  The program has proven to be popular with facilities as a way of increasing staffing levels and quality of care to nursing home residents.  However, current law does not provide the assurance of continuation of the program or its funding level limiting its expansion to other nursing facilities that might want to participate.


SB 318 requires that changes in funding for the enhancement rate and the nursing facility base rate are to be by equal percentages.




It is the committee's opinion that this bill does not expressly grant any additional rulemaking authority to a state officer, department, agency, or institution. 




SECTION 1.  Amends Section 32.028(g) and (i), Human Resources Code, as follows:


            (g) Deletes existing text to provide a certain incentive program only to the extent that appropriated funds are available after money is allocated to base rate reimbursements.


            (i) Provides that changes in funding for nursing facility payment rates are intended to change the base rate and incentive-based rate by equal percentages.


SECTION 2.  Authorizes delay of implementation until any necessary federal waivers or authorizations are obtained.


SECTION 3.  Effective date of September 1, 2007.




September 1, 2007.