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Nursing home inspections div. improves but still falls short

The state division charged with monitoring nursing homes and other care facilities says it's increased the number of on-site inspections this year. But advocates for the elderly say the department's e

The state division charged with monitoring nursing homes and other care facilities says it's increased the number of on-site inspections this year. But advocates for the elderly say the department's effort still fall short. KPBS Reporter Kenny Goldberg has the story.

California law requires state inspectors to visit each care facility once every five years. State officials say budget cuts and staffing shortages have prevented them from meeting that standard. But officials say the licensing division has recently hired more employees and is on the upswing.

Pat McGuiness directs the non-profit California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform. She thinks the department needs some major improvements.

McGuiness: "Every residential care facility for the elderly in California should be inspected visited at least once a year. There should be sufficient staff to respond to complaints by residents, and there should be sufficient staff to provide the kind of oversight that's necessary."

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a budget increase for the licensing division this year.

Kenny Goldberg, KPBS News.