NURSING HOME ABUSE

Senator Proposes 3-Strike Rule for Nursing Homes

Submitted by jrlaw on Dec 17th, 2014

Three Strikes for Nursing Homes

Texas has had its fair share of bad press when it comes to the level of care provided by nursing homes in our state.

This year, the Lone Star State topped the list chronicling the worst facilities providing nursing home care. A Texas senator has thus taken it upon himself to try to change this outlook by proposing tougher sanctions targeting the worst of the worst with regard to nursing home care.

Mel-Rose Nursing Home Targeted

Senator Charles Schwertner originally proposed recommendations back in August of 2014 after he held a meeting with the Sunset Advisory Committee. He singled out seven nursing homes, with one situated in East Texas. He named Eastwood Care and Rehab (also known as Mel-Rose Care and Rehab), as being one of the worst perpetrators of nursing home regulations licensed by the Department of Aging and Disability Services.

The nursing home administrator allegedly admitted that the home had more than 70 deficiencies before he came in to put a plan in place to turn things around. Mel-Rose, which is now owned by Northcreek Healthcare, received a new license in August of 2014.

Three Strikes Rule for Nursing Homes Under Consideration in Texas

Submitted by jrlaw on Sep 3rd, 2014

Nursing home abuse is a serious problem throughout the United States, but Texas is making a move to do something about it. Lawmakers in the state are seeking stricter laws on nursing homes, especially as it pertains to those facilities that have a history of proven abuse.

Overview of the Proposal

Texas Nursing HomesLawmakers in the state of Texas are seeking legislation that would force those nursing homes with repeated reports of abuse to close their doors. The Texas Sunset Advisory Commission held a meeting on August 13th; it was during this meeting they recommended the crackdown on these nursing facilities. The organization urged the Legislature to make it a requirement for the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services to pull the license of every nursing home in the state that has a minimum of three violations of the gravest type during any two-year period.

The Republican state senator who recommended this action stated it would only target the absolute worst facilities in the state. He feels this type of legislation would allow Texas to move quicker with new regulations than that of the federal authorities. He stated one facility in his district closed in July because they lost federal funding. He feels it is time the state started protecting its own citizens instead of relying on the federal government.

Texas Failing in Quality of Long-Term Care For The Elderly

Submitted by jrlaw on Jun 30th, 2014

Quality of Care for the Elderly in Texas

There is no doubt that people have concerns about the quality of care that the elderly in Texas are forced to face. The AARP recently released a report that ranks each state according to the quality of long-term care.

30 Percent of Nursing Homes Sanctioned Due to Elder Abuse

Submitted by jrlaw on May 14th, 2014

Nursing home abuse is on the increase, and it doesn’t appear to be getting any better. The Special Investigations Division of the House Government Reform Committee conducted a study recently in which they revealed a serious problem with sexual, psychological, verbal, and physical abuse occurring in nursing homes. The results of that study are alarming to say the least.

Laws & Requirements on Nursing Homes in Texas

Submitted by jrlaw on Jan 16th, 2014

What rules and regulations are nursing homes legally required follow?

There comes a time when an individual reaches a certain age in life, when assistance is needed. As it is likely a new realm for most people, questions arise about what requirements nursing homes must follow in the state of Texas.  Believe it or not, there are multiple requirements that nursing homes must follow, and numerous rights that belong to people 60 years of age and older.

Discovering Nursing Home Abuse

Submitted by jrlaw on Jul 11th, 2013

Abusing somebody in a nursing home facility is an egregious enough offense that most people really don't want to accuse anyone of having done it. Unfortunately, this may lead people to doubt very good instincts about whether or not someone they loved is being abused in such a facility. Here are some of the things that may lead you to take action if you believe that someone you love who is in a nursing home is being abused. Remember, you can also report nursing home abuse if you believe it is happening to somebody else at the nursing home facility with whom you have no real emotional involvement. You very well may be doing them a favor.

Overmedication

Overmedication is one of the most common forms of nursing home abuse. It is also sometimes the result of simple negligence. If you go to visit a loved one and they don't suffer from any sort of a disorder that would affect them cognitively, watch out for signs that they may be being overmedicated. They may, for example, seem like they are intoxicated on a drug. They may wander in their conversations, have a difficult time paying attention, be nearly sedated or exhibit other signs that they have taken too much of a given drug. This has to be reported immediately, as it can quickly turn into a deadly situation.

Understanding Nursing Home Abuse as a Crime and in Civil Court

Submitted by jrlaw on May 1st, 2013

In 2011, a man in Santa Clara California was convicted of elder abuse and was sentenced to 17 years in jail. The case involved a 94-year-old woman who he forcibly raped. In a situation such as this, there may be criminal and civil liability that come into play for the family victimized by the perpetrator.

Civil vs. Criminal

In a situation such as the one described above, there may be criminal and civil law involved in going after the people responsible. These are very different things. The work of the police, criminal courts and the other entities involved in enforcing the law are not necessarily done on behalf of the victims. They’re done on behalf of society as a whole.

Whistleblowers Turn Case in Nursing Home Lawsuit

Submitted by jrlaw on Mar 26th, 2013

According to the Daily Journal, two people who formerly worked at a nursing home were instrumental in turning a jury against a facility accused of rampant abuse and fraud. The women were employees up until 2004, when they decided to speak out about what was going on at the nursing home. Unfortunately, their story is common among nursing home abuse cases.

Phony Claims

One element of the case involved filing phony claims to Medicare and Medicaid, according to the report. This is not uncommon and is something that these agencies have to deal with all the time. Some nursing home facilities claim that care was given that was never rendered or bill for other expenses that are unjustified, taking in the profits off of the claims once they are paid.

Another Nursing Home Abuse Case Discovered by Hidden Camera

Submitted by jrlaw on Mar 12th, 2013

According to WABC in New York, a woman who had her grandmother in a nursing home in the Bronx discovered abuse going on by planting a hidden camera in the room. The woman who was being abused suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and from dementia, two conditions which make it much easier for abusers to conceal what they’re doing.

The woman started to get suspicious when she noticed that her grandmother had bruises on her hands. The nursing home administration told her that the woman’s bruises were caused when she was banging her hands on the railings on her bed. The victim’s granddaughter, however, didn’t buy this and decided to hide a camera in a plant in the woman’s room.

Nursing Home Workers Sometimes Assert Senior Rights

Submitted by jrlaw on Jan 3rd, 2013

Three recent wrongful termination lawsuits filed in Michigan detail how the employees at a nursing home sometimes end up being the ones to assert the rights of senior citizens and other patients.

In one case, an employee filed a wrongful termination lawsuit because she was assigned to a patient that she knew she would not be able to provide adequate care for. The nurse had injured her wrist and had a limitation on how much weight she was supposed to lift. She told management that she could adequately care for the patient to which she had been assigned and, eventually, that resident did end up falling. The nurse told this to a state investigator and that she was told not to write up a report about the incident and, the next day, the nurse was fired, leading to the lawsuit.

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