The quality of care that residents receive in a nursing home can be profoundly affected by who owns it, studies have shown. It’s not always clear who should be held accountable, though: Many nursing homes are owned by companies that are owned by other companies, obscuring who has the ultimate decision-making power. As more nursing homes are sold, information about an incoming owner’s performance in other homes becomes more relevant, as it may provide insight into how their latest acquisitions will fare.

To help navigate the confusing world of nursing home ownership, ProPublica’s Nursing Home Inspect now publishes detailed ownership information for facilities and an upgraded search to help you sift through the information.

The data comes from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which publishes “affiliated entities” for nursing homes — lists of people or companies that have an ownership stake in or operational control over multiple nursing homes. CMS’ goal is to provide a better understanding of an owner or operator’s performance across all the nursing homes they are associated with. Some entities are affiliated with only a handful of homes, while others, like Genesis HealthCare or The Ensign Group, are affiliated with hundreds of homes across multiple states. Because CMS does not provide this data in a way that’s easy for most people to use, we’ve added it to our Nursing Home Inspect tool.

Our new affiliated entity pages allow users to easily explore data on each company or person who is responsible for nursing homes, listing all homes associated with that entity and showing recent serious deficiencies —  failure to meet care requirements — found at those homes. You can even view a list of all affiliated entities nationwide.

We also added detailed ownership information to individual nursing home pages, allowing users to see who has an ownership stake in the home, as well as who has managerial control over the facility and how long they have held that position.

To go along with these additions, we’ve also expanded the database’s advanced search capabilities so journalists and others can quickly identify affiliated entities that have a history of serious deficiencies or other problems. For instance, users can search for all serious deficiencies associated with Life Care Centers of America.

Separately, users can also now filter searches by F-tags, which are a system for specifying the types of compliance issues that may be found during a CMS inspection. These tags allow users to narrow their search beyond broad categories such as “infection control deficiencies” to more targeted queries such as deficiencies associated with reporting COVID-19 data to residents and families or ensuring staff are vaccinated against COVID-19.

ProPublica plans to continue enhancing Nursing Home Inspect with new data and features in the coming months. If you write a story using this new information, come across bugs or issues, or have ideas for improvements, please let us know!