VA Health Care:

Supply of Nursing Home Beds Is Sufficient to 2005 in the Detroit, Michigan, Area

HEHS-00-164R: Published: Aug 21, 2000. Publicly Released: Aug 21, 2000.

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Stephen P. Backhus
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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) needs assessment of nursing home care in Detroit, Michigan.

GAO noted that: (1) VA's conclusion in its assessment--that the supply of beds available to VA in 2005 will be sufficient to meet VA's needs--is likely to be correct; (2) even allowing for underestimates by VA regarding demand for nursing home care and overestimates of the supply of nursing home beds, the supply of beds available is likely to be sufficient to meet demand; (3) to determine whether the number of nursing home beds would be adequate, VA used 1996 national nursing home use rates and current population projections to estimate the total demand for nursing home beds in 2005; (4) it then used current Detroit-area data from the Health Care Financing Administration on nursing home bed availability to project the likely number of beds that would be available in 2005; and (5) VA concluded that the supply would be sufficient to meet projected demand.

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