Comparative Performance of Private Equity Owned U.S. Nursing Homes During the COVID-19 Pandemic

To understand how American private equity-owned (PE) nursing homes performed during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to other nursing homes, Mark Unruh, Ph.D., senior author and associate professor of population health sciences, and Robert Tyler Braun, Ph.D., first author and instructor of population health sciences, worked with colleagues from the Department of Population Health Sciences at Weill Cornell Medicine on a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Along with Hyunkyung Yun, M.S.W.; Lawrence P. Casalino, M.D., Ph.D.; Zachary Myslinski, B.A.; Farai M. Kuwonza, M.S. and Hye-Young Jung, Ph.D., Drs. Unruh and Braun completed a cross-sectional study of 11,470 nursing homes as of July 2, 2020. Together, they compared outcomes of PE-owned nursing homes with for-profit, non-profit, and government-owned nursing homes. The researchers found no significant differences in staffing levels, COVID-19 cases or deaths, or deaths from any cause between PE-owned nursing homes and facilities with other types of ownership. However, nursing homes listed as for-profit and non-profit were more likely to have at least a one-week supply of N95 masks and medical gowns compared to PE-owned nursing homes. The researchers note that these PPE shortages may warrant monitoring moving forward.

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