There's a new nationwide rating system for nursing homes, but not everyone's happy about it. Tom Moore, executive director of the Wisconsin Health Care Association , believes the Five Star Rating System from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services was implemented prematurely. "Unfortunately, where star systems might be appropriate for rating restaurants and such, rating a health care facility is much more complex process," says Moore.
The system is supposed to induce providers to improve quality, and while Moore concedes it may do that, he hopes the developers will also see the need to improve the system. "One thing that is conspicuously absent in this rating system . . . is a measure of consumer and family satisfaction with the care," Moore says. "I think that's probably the best barometer of the quality of care being provided." Moore says there is an indication that consumer feedback will eventually be included in the rankings, which can be found on the federal Medicare website .