North Carolina Launches Nursing Home Rating System

Posted on Aug 25, 2009
Much like a similar rating system for children's daycare centers, North Carolina has launched a four-star rating system for the state's nursing homes, adult care centers, and assisted living facilities. North Carolina officials hope the new rating system will not only help NC families properly place their elderly loved ones in appropriate living situations, but that it will also encourage NC nursing homes to provide safe, high-quality care to North Carolina seniors.

The rating system was put together by Megan Lamphere, the ratings administrator for the NC state Division of Health Service Regulation's Adult Care Licensure Section. Lamphere stated that the rating system would help families find the right fit for their older loved ones.

While dozens of nursing homes have received banner rating from the new system, seven North Carolina nursing homes have received a zero star rating. These nursing homes have histories of nursing home abuse, nursing home neglect, admissions issues, financial problems, medication problems, and safety problems. Among the zero-star nursing homes are Wake Forest Care Center in Wake County and Floyd McKissick Assisted Living Center in Warren County. Wake Forest Care Center suffered a low score due to a recent fire (caused by a smoking patient) and a number of medication mistakes.

In many cases, smaller, privately run nursing home received stellar scores despite smaller facilities and smaller staffs. In the cases of low scores, inspectors are keeping a close eye on the nursing homes and removing residents when necessary.

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