NJ Department of Health Inspection Staff
Providing the Department of Health with adequate funding will contribute to maintaining the viability of every hospital and long-term care facility with enforcement of patient safety laws. Under the previous administration, there was a long, steady decline in NJ DOH enforcement and inspections. Hospital inspections were no longer conducted regularly by the Department of Health for license renewals. Rather, renewals were made based on reports made by private accreditation entities.
The recent deadly viral outbreaks at University Hospital and the Wanaque Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation are a warning sign that must be remedied. The DOH should not rely on outside accreditation entities to perform inspections, rather NJDOH should conduct annual inspections at hospitals and other health care facilities.
HPAE urges Governor Murphy and the NJ Legislature to reinstate adequate funding to the NJ DOH to allow the department to fulfill its responsibility to its mission of ensuring hospital safety for patients and workers. Under current staffing levels at NJDOH, the state is challenged to enforce current regulations that ensure health and safety standards are in practice for preventing the spread of diseases and that patients are receiving care in a safe environment.