On June 11, CMS issued an alert warning nursing homes not to seize residents' CARES Act stimulus checks. Providers that do so could lose their Medicare and Medicaid contracts.
CMS cited resident rights laws in support of its warning:
- 42 CFR 483.12, Freedom from Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation (prohibition against misappropriation of resident property): "the deliberate misplacement, exploitation or wrongful, temporary, or permanent use of a resident's belongings or money without the resident's consent."
- 42 CFR 483.10, each resident has "the right to manage his or her financial affairs"; "The facility must not require residents to deposit their personal funds with the facility. If a resident chooses to deposit personal funds with the facility, upon written authorization of a resident, the facility must act as a fiduciary of the resident's funds and hold, safeguard, manage, and account for the personal funds of the resident deposited with the facility...."
The FTC issued a consumer alert advising Medicaid beneficiaries that nursing homes CANNOT require them to sign their CARES Act stimulus checks over to the nursing home. The FTC encourages residents who have been asked by nursing homes for their CARES Act checks to complaint to the state attorney general.
MPA has updated its Resident Rights Policy and Resident Rights Summary to reflect this alert. Subscribers to MPA's Nursing Home Compliance Program received an email with the new policy downloads today. Click here to subscribe.