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Have a Better Survey!

10 Simple Steps to Improve Your Survey Results

LeadingAge NY ProCare has compiled the following steps based on member experiences, review of survey data, and discussions held at the bimonthly association meetings with the Department of Health (DOH). While they do not guarantee a citation-free survey, they do address some common and easily correctible practices that often result in deficiencies cited by survey teams.

  1. Be observant of staff practices with respect to infection control. How is soiled linen handled? Does hand-washing occur? Are precaution signs visible? Supplies available? Are all staff (not only nursing) aware of the precautions?
  2. Is food brought in to residents by families dated and labeled and the same facility policies and procedures for food storage/handling followed?
  3. Are medications properly stored in the medication room at the right temperature/conditions, and are expired medications still present?
  4. Is staff aware of fire safety procedures? How does staff respond when asked what they would do if there were a fire in a resident room? Are corridors free from obstructions?
  5. Is staff aware of the advance directives of residents? Is your system clear, and are directives easily identified? Can staff explain what they would do if a resident were found to not be responsive?
  6. Is staff knocking prior to entering the room of the resident? When residents call out/use a call bell, is staff responsive?
  7. Does the Grievance Log reflect timely resolution of resident/family issues? Is the proper signage related to Grievances and Abuse reporting present?
  8. Do Resident Council minutes continue to reflect the same problems month after month, and is there evidence that the nursing home attempted to address/resolve the issues?
  9. Is there enough help to assist residents at mealtime? Is staff engaging residents, assisting those who require help, using proper food handling practices, and serving food at the proper temperature?
  10. Is resident information confidential? Are medication cart screens visible to anyone passing by? Is resident information left on the counter of the nurse’s station in full view? Does signage placed in the room reveal care-related information about the resident that can be viewed by others?


For over 25 years, LeadingAge NY ProCare has been helping members prepare for DOH surveys and improving the Quality of Care and Quality of Life for nursing home residents by providing in-depth reviews to ensure regulatory compliance. Please contact a ProCare representive at 518.867.8383 to learn more about ProCare’s services.