The Department of Public Health is committed to improving the quality of services provided in all nursing homes and is actively working on quality improvement initiatives in nursing homes across the Commonwealth.

These important initiatives are supported by the Department through the Civil Monetary Penalty (CMP) fund, which provides Massachusetts with funding to support activities to improve the quality of care or improve the quality of life of nursing home residents in the Commonwealth.

Supportive Planning and Operations Team (SPOT)

In July 2016, the Department of Public Health launched the Supportive Planning and Operations Team (SPOT) Initiative, in which long term care and clinical care experts provide individualized technical assistance to nursing homes that have been identified as having the greatest opportunity for improvement in their quality of care.

The SPOT team engaged with 40 skilled nursing facilities in 2016, conducting unannounced site visits to assess quality assurance and performance improvement within each facility and providing in-person technical assistance throughout the second half of the year. Through this collaborative effort, these nursing homes began constructing performance improvement plans and worked to implement standardized monitoring of quality improvement activities.

To learn more about the assessment, interventions, and outcomes from the first year of SPOT, please view these slides from the SPOT Stakeholder Presentation in January 2017: Supportive Planning and Operations Team (SPOT) Initiative Stakeholder Presentation pptx format of SPOT Initiative Stakeholder Presentation
docx format of                             SPOT Initiative Stakeholder Presentation                .

In 2017, the Department is working to continue this work with the 40 skilled nursing facilities and 20 additional facilities.

Resident and Family Council Engagement

The Resident and Family Council Engagement Initiative works with skilled nursing facility staff, residents, and family members to develop, enhance, and sustain resident and family councils through education and training opportunities. The Department has engaged the Massachusetts Coalition for the Prevention of Medical Errors on this Initiative, which extends through December 2017.

Resident and family councils are essential to foster meaningful engagement between nursing home residents, their families, and facility leadership to improve person-centered care and the quality of resident life.

All Massachusetts skilled nursing facilities were invited to participate in the Initiative and are encouraged to include residents and their family members as part of the facility’s project team. Participating facilities take part in webinars, workshops, and other learning opportunities to help improve their resident and family councils.