Government oversight does not ensure nursing home safety

You may take comfort from the fact that the federal government has a hand in making sure that nursing homes in Kentucky and across the country comply with safety regulations. This should mean that your loved one is safe as a resident at a local facility. However, the legal team at Debra L. Broz, Attorneys at Law, PLC, often handles cases of nursing home and abuse and neglect. How is it that facilities are continuing to put residents in danger, even after supposedly correcting the problems noted in official investigations?

According to Healthcare Finance, even when a nursing home becomes the focus of state and federal investigations because of health and safety violations, it does not necessarily become a safer place for residents. In fact, 52 percent of the 528 facilities that successfully completed the Medicaid program for correcting serious violations in 2014 went on to harm patients again. One-third of those facilities are still open and receiving federal funding, but hold the lowest possible health and safety rating of one star out of five. Some officials believe that the amount of time the facilities remain under surveillance after a citation is not enough to ensure that changes will be maintained.

To find information about your loved one's nursing home, you may check both federal and state-specific websites to find reports and ratings. Keep in mind that one of the primary indicators that your loved one is at risk is a lack of adequate staff. You may want to question the facility to discover the current nurse-to-patient staffing ratio, and the average amount of time each day a registered nurse spends with your loved one.

More information about signs and symptoms of nursing home abuse and neglect is available on our webpage.

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