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Racial Composition of Residents Tied to Nursing Home Quality

Nursing homes with no black residents have higher revenues and margins, better processes, outcomes

MONDAY, Sept. 16 (HealthDay News) -- The racial composition of nursing home residents has an influence on financial and quality performance, according to a study published online June 26 in Health Services Research.

Latarsha Chisholm, Ph.D., from the University of Central Florida in Orlando, and colleagues examined Medicare- and Medicaid-certified nursing homes across the United States that submitted Medicare cost reports between 1999 and 2004. The authors sought to examine the effects of the racial composition of residents on nursing homes' financial and quality performance.

The researchers observed differences in financial and quality performance measures for nursing homes with high proportions of black residents and nursing homes with no or medium proportions of black residents. Higher revenues and higher operating margins and total profit margins were seen for nursing homes with no black residents, and these nursing homes also exhibited better processes and outcomes compared with nursing homes with a high proportion of black residents.

"Nursing homes' financial viability and quality of care are influenced by the racial composition of residents," the authors write. "Policy makers should consider initiatives to improve both the financial and quality performance of nursing homes serving predominantly black residents."

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