On August 5, 2016, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued guidance to nursing homes in a letter to state survey agencies (Letter) that addresses nursing homes’ obligations to protect residents. The Letter focuses on potential psychosocial harm to nursing home residents caused by the sharing on social media of demeaning photographs or recordings of residents taken by nursing home staff. The Letter appears to have been issued partly in response to a recent investigation by ProPublica, which found numerous instances of alleged abuse of nursing home residents connected to social media postings.
- personal privacy and confidentiality of their personal and clinical records; and
- be free from verbal, sexual, physical, and mental abuse (which includes without limitation humiliation, harassment, threats of punishment, or deprivation).