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Chairman Doggett Calls on CMS to Release Independent Report on COVID-19 Crisis in Nursing Homes

September 14, 2020

***For Immediate Release***

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September 14, 2020

Contact: Kate Stotesbery



Chairman Doggett Calls on CMS to Release Independent Report on COVID-19 Crisis in Nursing Homes

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Chair of the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, called on CMS to publicly release the final report of the Coronavirus Commission on Safety and Quality in Nursing Homes. The Commission provided the report to CMS on September 1, yet, two weeks later, Administrator Seema Verma has failed to release it. Administrator Verma’s refusal to immediately publicize the findings comes as reports allege communications officials at the Department of Health and Human Services have tampered with other information related to COVID-19, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

“With the deaths of over 50,000 nursing home residents, continued COVID-19 outbreaks, and continued testing and PPE shortages, the Trump Administration must provide the complete, independent findings on the extent of the crisis and recommendations to keep our loved ones safe,” Congressman Doggett said. “Secreting away data showing wrongs neither corrects the problem nor releases you from responsibility. Families seeking information on their loved ones’ safety deserve full transparency. Fearing accountability more than coronavirus, Administrator Verma has refused both to participate in our nursing home hearing and to respond to questions about CMS failures to protect the health and safety of vulnerable residents and staff.”

This is the latest action in an ongoing effort to seek higher standards and greater transparency for nursing homes, which follows a Ways and Means Health Subcommittee hearing on “Examining the COVID-19 Nursing Home Crisis”; full video of that hearing here. During the hearing, Chairman Doggett raised concerns that the Coronavirus Commission’s meetings were being held in secret. Though the Trump Administration was given the opportunity to pick the date and time, they declined to send Administrator Verma or a representative to the congressional hearing. 


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