AMDA Statement Shines Spotlight on PALTC Staffing

July 29, 2021

Organization recommends recruiting and training personnel first, then focusing on standards

Columbia, MD – Adequate and consistent staffing for post-acute and long-term care (PALTC) facilities has always been a key concern to assure the best patient and resident care, and the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the issue to the forefront like never before. That’s why AMDA – The Society for PALTC Medicine has released a Position Statement on Appropriate Staffing Standards In Post-Acute and Long-Term Care. Here are some of the key points:

  • Any decisions about staffing need to consider broader issues such as the complexity and acuity of a facility’s population and the functional level of residents and services required.
  • While having a sufficient number of staff is critical, staffing levels based only on resident-to-worker ratios will not adequately assess or meet resident needs. Continued research regarding staffing levels (number and skill mix) that will optimally meet the individual needs of residents in nursing homes is needed.
  • Person-centered and evidence-based dementia care requires 24-hour caregiving. As more residents in PALTC are diagnosed with dementia or other cognitively impaired related diagnosis, facilities should have the flexibility and resources to staff adequately based on needs specific to this population.
  • Increasing PALTC staff compensation (salary and benefits) to match the ongoing competitive market of other health care delivery sites is critical.

“Before all else, we must immediately address the staffing shortage crisis in PALTC facilities across the United States—a situation that has gotten even worse in light of the continuing spread of highly transmissible COVID variants,” says AMDA Executive Director Christopher E. Laxton. “We strongly believe that the primary goal is to attract, recruit, and train new personnel, and then to apply the staffing recommendations outlined in our statement. We also recommend building on existing regulations rather than creating new mandates on either the state or federal level.”

The position also points to the need to improve the quality, competence, and engagement of staff leadership and supervision as an important element in increasing staff retention. The complete statement can be found here. Please contact Ellen Mullally at if you would like to speak to an AMDA expert.


AMDA – The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine is the only medical specialty society representing the community of over 50,000 medical directors, physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and other practitioners working in the various post-acute and long-term care (PALTC) settings. Dedicated to defining and improving quality, we advance our mission through timely professional development, evidence-based clinical guidance, and tireless advocacy on behalf of members, patients, families, and staff. Visit for more information.