There are thousands of long term care providers in California, but only one place where consumers can find both unbiased and easy-to-use information about the quality of care they deliver. That’s CalQualityCare.org. Sponsored by the California HealthCare Foundation, this Web site is a free resource that provides ratings of long term care providers throughout the state, and helps you choose among options such as nursing homes, home health care agencies, and residential care facilities.
Watch this short video to learn how CalQualityCare.org can help you with long term care decisions.
This Web site is run by two independent organizations dedicated to improving health care quality. It is not affiliated with the long term care industry nor any individual facility or agency.
Purpose of CalQualityCare.org
Although there is some information on long term care quality available to the public, it is often not objective, generally difficult for consumers to find, and even more difficult to understand. The growing need for information about long term care quality prompted the California HealthCare Foundation to fund a team of researchers to develop a resource for unbiased information about quality of care in California.
In 2007, about 1.4 million Californians used some type of long term care services. That figure is expected to skyrocket as the population ages and the number of working-age people with disabilities grows. The long term care industry serves a complex and diverse cross section, including adults and children with disabilities and the elderly. Alternatives to institution-based care include residential, home health, hospice, and personal care services programs. California has increased spending for Medicaid nursing home services, but nursing homes continue to have many serious federal deficiencies, state citations, and complaints. Between 2003 and 2007, the total number of federal deficiencies and state citations increased by 35%.
The predecessor Web site for CalQualityCare.org, California Nursing Home Search (CalNHS.org), began in 2002 with information and ratings on nursing homes. In December 2004, the Foundation added similar profiles and ratings of home health care agencies and hospice services. And in September 2005 the site was expanded to include congregate living health facilities, assisted living, continuing care retirement communities, adult day health care programs, and adult day care centers.
In 2009, CHCF launched CalQualityCare.org, upgrading and updating the California Nursing Home Search site based on in-depth research conducted among key audiences, including consumers and long term care providers. The redesign and redevelopment of the site include: integrating the different types of care into a seamless search; improved navigation, including a better structure to aid users in finding the information without being overwhelmed; introduction of a composite quality rating system for nursing homes, home health care, and hospice; and new information options, including an interactive map function.
New content was also developed. So while there are other existing resources available to help consumers, none offers the ease of use and clarity of information as CalQualityCare.org, all in one place.
This site offers a unique tool to help you determine the best type of care for you or your loved one’s individual needs. The Long Term Care Assistant works like a personal guide by asking you ten simple questions and then providing recommendations for the types of long term care and the level of service that best fit your needs.