Hillsboro House Nursing Homes Gets Top Ranking from Federal Government and US News and World Report

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The family operated facility recognized as among the best in New Hampshire.

[the] facility is the only one in the southwestern part of the state to achieve the top rankings

Hillsboro House Nursing Home has been designated a five star facility by the federal government’s Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The designation is the highest possible rating. Hillsboro House has also been ranked as one of the best nursing homes in the state in the US News ratings of best nursing homes.

According to owner Andrew Irwin, the School Street facility is the only one in the southwestern part of the state to achieve the top rankings. “I think it’s a reflection of the kind of staff we have and the kind of support we get from resident families that’s behind these rankings,” he said. “None of the large facilities in bigger communities like Keene, Peterborough, and Concord have gotten these ratings. In a small town, we’re able to attract and retain caring, capable staff. And the families of our residents tend to be active and involved in the well being of their loved ones. Those kinds of involvements by families and staff really make a difference in the lives of our residents.”

According to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the one to five star system is intended to help families and potential nursing home residents choose the most appropriate facility to meet their needs. The rankings are based on three sets of criteria: staffing patterns, the results of annual inspections by state agencies, and quality measures of outcomes for residents. The quality measures involve the ways residents progress with “health, physical functioning, medical status, and general well being.” Traditionally, about 12% of the nation’s nursing homes are ranked with five stars.

According to Irwin, the Medicare ratings are particularly significant. “My family has been providing long term care here for almost 50 years,” he said. “But now more and more, we’re seeing people who need rehabilitation after they come out of the hospital. That’s usually a short term sort of thing that Medicare pays for, so the Medicare standards are pretty strict. I think it’s particularly significant that we’re doing so well with Medicare.”

The US News rankings are intended as a consumer guide. According to the publisher, the information is a valuable tool for families and residents: “To check out a nursing home, you need information that is clear, meaningful and reliable. . . . How does the facility do in health inspections? Is there enough nursing care? US News has pulled together government data and ranked more than 15,000 nursing homes.”

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