Press Releases

STATEMENT RELEASE: New JMI Repor⁠t⁠ Calls For Marke⁠t⁠-Based Reform To Improve Nurs⁠i⁠ng Home Care

By: The James Madison Institute / 2021


January 5, 2021

CONTACT: Logan Elizabeth Padgett



TALLAHASSEE – A new report by The James Madison Institute’s Center for Economic Prosperity entitled “Protecting Florida’s Most Vulnerable: Market-Based Reform to Improve Nursing Home Care” outlines obstacles to, and opportunities for, the improvement of nursing home care in Florida at a time when nursing home residents are particularly vulnerable.

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted significant shortcomings in our healthcare system and, perhaps most particularly, in the nursing home industry. Nursing home residents represent six percent of cases and 40 percent of fatalities nationwide. In Florida alone, more than 7,700 nursing home residents have died from COVID-19––about 40 percent of the state’s total fatalities.

The report details the importance of competition in the nursing home industry to better incentivize providers to improve the quality of care. This can be achieved, among other reforms, by eliminating burdensome Certificate of Need (CON) laws which dissuade competition, impede expansion and disincentivize innovation, often resulting in large-scale institutional care settings.

The report states that “lawmakers must recognize that regulatory requirements only create minimum standards of care. They do not create incentives for providers to go beyond those minimum standards. The best way to encourage quality beyond regulatory standards is competition. Hence, anti-competitive policies like Certificate of Need laws should be eliminated.”

“Florida is faced with a uniquely growing elderly population, which will inevitably require additional facilities throughout the state. We are presented with an opportunity to rewrite the script on nursing home care in a way that embraces evidence-based policy decisions and abandon the top-down approach of the past. Like any market, increasing competition and reducing burdensome, outdated regulations will unleash the limitless potential of innovation.” – Sal Nuzzo, Vice President of Policy, The James Madison Institute

“As Florida’s elderly population continues to grow, the Sunshine State has a tremendous opportunity to become a national leader in the transformation of nursing home care. While there is a clear role for regulation in the industry, this only creates a minimum standard of care. It is essential that we institute a broad array of reforms to ensure that elderly Floridians have access to the best care for their individual needs.” – Vittorio Nastasi, Policy Analyst, Reason Foundation

To read “Protecting Florida’s Most Vulnerable: Market-Based Reform to Improve Nursing Home Care,” click here.


The James Madison Institute is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to the advancement of free markets and liberty. The Institute conducts research on such issues as criminal justice, health care, taxes, and regulatory environments.