To Nursing Home Bosses: “Want more state funds? Then listen to your workers!”

July 29, 2022

Nursing home operators are hungry for more money…and we told lawmakers to ensure any additional money be tied to raising standards in our facilities.

We have fought at bargaining tables, at the ballot box, in Sacramento, and in the streets to bring attention to the crisis in our nursing homes and demand a solution.

GOOD NEWS: Through our collective power, we won quality benchmarks in California’s Medi-Cal reimbursement system.

The new Medi-Cal Reimbursement (AB 186) now requires that:

  • For nursing home facilities to receive a “workforce adjustment increase” in their Medi-Cal reimbursement, they must have significant worker-voice standards in place, such as a union contract, a binding written agreement with workers, a Labor Management Committee, or similar. That’s the state telling nursing home operators that workers’ voices matter! Listen to us!
  • This Medi-Cal reauthorization now assigns a separate and higher spending limit of 5% on labor costs—in other words: spend more on your workers—but keeps the cost caps on non-labor (and bosses’ salaries are in the “non-labor” category) at a much lower rate of 2%.
  • The reauthorization also includes a $280 million Workforce and Quality Incentive Program that will establish at least two workforce-based metrics to determine nursing homes’ eligibility to receive a portion of that funding.

The reauthorization insists that 85% of COVID public health emergency funds be spent on non-management wage/benefits increases and other worker pay incentives, again aimed at staff retention.

So in summary…
If your bosses want more public money (and trust us: they do), then they need to ensure you get better wages & benefits and have a strong voice on the job.