The New York Times is reporting this morning that 90% of all nursing homes were cited for violations of federal health and safety standards. Approximately 17% of U.S. nursing homes had deficiencies that caused actual harm. As mentioned in this blog previously, nursing facilities that operate “for-profit” were more likely to have problems than non-profit homes.
Federal inspectors received 37,150 complaints in 2007 about nursing home conditions, the bulk of which involved bed sores, abuse and neglect of residents, medication errors, and nutritional issues. Failure to sufficiently staff was noted as a particular concern in the report, including the allegation that nursing homes “have systematically failed to provide staff in sufficient numbers and with appropriate clinical expertise to serve their residents.” Not surprisingly, researchers learned that elderly patients receive better care at homes with a higher ratio of nursing staff members to patients.
The U.S. has approximately 15,000 nursing homes, housing nearly 2 million people. Under the laws of most states, including California, these homes are inspected once a year.
The elder abuse lawyers at Walton Law Firm LLP, a Southern California law firm, represents individuals who have been impacted by the abuse of elders and dependent adults while under professional care. All consultations are free, and cases are accepted in all Southern California counties.