Nursing Home Surveys by the Kentucky Office of Inspector General

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The Office of Inspector General, Division of Health Care Facilities and Services, investigates complaints about nursing facilities. They will also conduct an annual survey in each facility. Extended surveys will be conducted if the standard survey indicates substandard care.

How does this survey work?
Surveyors will meet with residents in a group setting. The surveyor will ask residents questions and also give residents the opportunity to discuss concerns of their own. If you do not feel comfortable discussing your concerns with the surveyor in a group setting, ask a surveyor to come to your room.

The surveyors will not reveal the names of residents or family members who spoke to them.

After surveyors have completed their inspection they will conduct an exit conference to review their findings with facility staff. A resident, generally the president of the Resident Council, should also be invited to attend.

The local long term care ombudsman may participate in the survey process. The surveyors will contact the ombudsman during the survey to inform the ombudsman of the survey and invite the ombudsman, with residents' approval, to the resident group meeting held during the survey process. The ombudsman will also be invited to attend the exit conference. The ombudsman can share complaints with the survey team.

The survey team will leave a report with the facility staff. If the surveyors found the facility was not in compliance with federal or state requirements, the facility must develop, document, and complete a plan of correction. The plan of correction is found on the right column of the survey report. The deficiencies that the surveyors found are on the left column of the report.

The survey report becomes a public document and must be available in a public area in the facility after ten days or, if the plan of correction is not accepted by the Office of Inspector General, when the plan of correction is accepted. The facility has the right to dispute findings of the surveyors.

If the facility is found to be seriously out of compliance in major areas or if the Office of Inspector General believes residents are at a serious and immediate health risk, the Offfice can request that the facility be decertified for participation in the Medicare and Medicaid programs. The Office of Inspector General can also issue an "Emergency Order to Relocate" residents the Office believes are at a serious health risk. The Office issues the emergency order to alert residents and families that serious problems exist in the facility.

If your home is to be decertified or if you have questions about the survey or the survey process, contact the Office of Inspector General, Division of Health Care Facilities and Services or your local long term care ombudsman.

You can reach the Office of Inspector General at:

Division of Health Care Facilities and Services
(502) 564-7963

How can I compare nursing homes and their surveys?
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency that oversees nursing homes has a website at that contains information on every Medicare & Medicaid certified nursing home in the country including the latest state reported survey results.

Reviewed August 2009