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Highlights

Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO discussed the effectiveness of complaint and enforcement practices to protect nursing home residents, and to ensure that homes participating in Medicare and Medicaid comply with federal standards, focusing on the: (1) effectiveness of states' complaint practices in protecting residents; (2) Health Care Financing Administration's (HCFA) role in establishing standards and conducting oversight of states' complaint practices and in using information about the results of complaint investigations to ensure compliance with nursing home standards; and (3) assessment of HCFA's use of sanction authority for homes that failed to maintain compliance with these standards.

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