Government moves to close Chicago nursing home amid neglect and abuse allegations

The federal government moved to close Somerset Place on Friday, a troubled Chicago nursing home accused of abuse and neglect of residents, according to the Breaking News Center.

The government moved to terminate funding for the nursing home in Uptown, contending in court filings that violence, abuse and mistreatment put “the health and safety of … residents in immediate jeopardy.”

Authorities report it has been four years since a a federal termination order has been issued for a Chicago nursing home. Four Illinois nursing homes have been de-certified because of problems since 2005 — those homes have been sold or closed.

The action follows a report by the Chicago Tribune, which identified 66 of the 300 residents as convicted felons with mental illness. The century-old former hotel was home to a chaotic environment of poorly-supervised residents who bit and punched each other, turned over tables and tested positive for drugs, according to federal inspection reports.

Former staff members told investigators that the Chicago nursing home was understaffed and its caseworkers were poorly trained. Somerset officials filed an emergency civil lawsuit in an attempt to stop the government action but were denied by a federal judge on Friday.

The home will receive Medicaid funding for another 30 days and may stay open while it tries to re-enter the Medicaid system or sell to a new owner.

One of the owners, who has a stake in a dozen Illinois nursing homes, declined to comment to the press. The nursing home is one of the largest in the state and reported a profit last year of almost $2.3 million.

Chicago police investigated 15 alleged assault and batteries inside the home between April 2008 and July 2009, as well as five reported cases of criminal sexual assault and five cases of narcotics possession.

One resident, who had been prostituting herself and using crack cocaine while living there, was later found murdered, according to The Tribune.

Illinois Nursing Home Resources

Click here for advice on finding an Illinois nursing home through the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Click here for reports of Illinois nursing homes with recent violations.

Illinois lawmakers have outlined the rights of nursing home residents in the Nursing Home Care Act.

If you have concerns about a Chicago nursing home, call the Illinois nursing home neglect and abuse lawyers at Abels & Annes at (866)-99-ABELS.