JULY 17, 1962

PAGE 13862


The VICE PRESIDENT. The Senator from Maine is recognized for 2 minutes.

Mr. MUSKIE. Mr. President, I should like to ask the distinguished Senator from New Mexico if he will consider accepting a modification of the language of the pending amendments.

On page 17 of the amendments there is a definition of "skilled nursing facility" which reads in part as follows:

The term "skilled nursing facility" means (except for purposes of section 1704(c) (2)) an institution (or a distinct part of an institution) which is affiliated or under common control with a hospital having an agreement in effect under section 1710.

In States like mine it seems to me this definition would work a hardship on some of our nursing homes, as we call them in my State. In Maine we have approximately 192 nursing homes, only 1 of which is "affiliated" within the meaning of this definition, Therefore, I suggest language to modify this provision of the amendments. The Senator from New Mexico has a copy of the language, which I should like to read into the RECORD. It would be included, if accepted by the distinguished Senator on page 23 of the amendments, between lines 11 and 12.

The VICE PRESIDENT. The time of the Senator from Maine has expired

Mr. ANDERSON. Mr. President, yield 2 more minutes to the Senator from Maine.

The VICE PRESIDENT. The Senator from Maine is recognized for 2 additional minutes.

Mr. MUSKIE. The language would read:


(h) The Secretary shall, after consultation with associations of nursing homes, the American Hospital Association, the Joint Commission of Accreditation of Hospitals and other appropriate professional organizations, make full and complete study of the best ways of increasing the availability of skilled nursing facility care for beneficiaries under this title under conditions assuring good quality of care; and, on the basis of such study, he may make a determination that additional nursing facilities in which such conditions assuring good quality of care exists constitute skilled nursing facilities under section 1706(b) if they also meet the requirements of subsection (b) (other than the requirement of affiliation and other than the requirement that a hospital utilization review plan be made applicable), and if the Secretary shall find that such action will not create an actuarial imbalance in the Federal health insurance trust fund. The Secretary shall promptly report to the Congress from time to time and in any event by July 1, 1963, the results of the study under this subsection and any action taken as a result thereof.

The purpose of the language, Mr. President, is to make it possible for nursing homes which do not presently meet the high standards of care required by the pending amendments to work toward those standards and to achieve eligibility whether or not they are able to meet the test of affiliation with an established hospital.

Would the Senator be willing to consider accepting this modification?

Mr. ANDERSON. Mr. President, the American Hospital Association expressed interest in nursing homes. We tried to meet that interest and to raise standards of nursing homes in the proposal. The language the Senator has read is completely satisfactory. Therefore, I modify my amendments accordingly.

Mr. MUSKIE. I thank the Senator.

The VICE PRESIDENT. The amendments are modified accordingly.