In the last half dozen years, the operations of nursing homes have been examined thoroughly by legislative committees, investigative bodies, newspapers, university public policy centers, and others. In spite of all this activity, one aspect of the operations of nursing homes, their implementation of government-mandated discharge-planning policies, has received relatively little attention. This is so even though both the federal and state governments, in theory at least, have committed themselves to a discharge-planning program for nursing-home patients. On the national level, federal law requires that patient-care policies “effect awareness of, and provision for, meeting the total medical and psychological needs of patients including...discharge planning.” Under New York law, operators are required to “maintain a discharge planning program” and “develop and document in the resident’s medical record a multidisciplinary discharge plan for all residents; and review...the plan as indicated by change in the patient’s...medical condition.” What actually occurs is a compliance which fails to consider adequately the individual patient’s potential for discharge. Once admitted to a nursing home, the patient has lost his options; he has arrived at his last residence.