Illinois Nursing Home Residents May be at Risk of Abuse

780049_blank_keyboard%20sxchu%20username%20lcs9.jpgAuthorities in Columbia, South Carolina are reportedly investigating allegations of assault that apparently resulted in the death of an elderly nursing home resident. According to the former resident’s son, the 90-year-old woman died less than six months after he made the difficult decision to place her in the Kingstree Nursing Facility. The patient’s son said he chose the facility after searching the area for a safe and clean skilled nursing home. The man stated this is a decision he now regrets.

The deceased woman reportedly entered the Kingstree Nursing Facility in May 2012. Soon after, her son claims he found her lying in her bed with a broken hip and numerous bruises across her body. According to her son, the woman claimed she was attached by two unidentified women. Her son apparently photographed the 90-year-old’s injuries and reported them to facility administrators. Although local law enforcement officers allegedly investigated the assault, no charges have yet been filed. According to the woman’s son, Kingstree Nursing Facility also conducted an investigation but has refused to release the results.

Last year, the same nursing home was apparently written up by federal investigators for failure to implement abuse and neglect policies and failure to report a resident head injury. According to the decedent’s son, having that information readily available would likely have prompted him to choose another care facility for his mother. Although such information may be obtained by filing a formal request, South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) does not currently post nursing home inspection results online. DHEC’s Director, Catherine Templeton, claims inspection data will be available on a website by the end of 2013.

Unfortunately, many nursing home residents in Illinois may be at risk for similar abuse. Most skilled nursing facilities in Illinois are under contract to receive federal Medicare and Medicaid funds. This means such institutions are required to adhere to both state and federal laws and are subject to inspection using federal guidelines. A number of federal databases currently make recent skilled nursing facility inspection information available to the public online. Although not all inspection information is available on the Internet, federal law requires that state inspection agencies and individual nursing homes provide inspection results to the public upon request. Sadly, the true risk of nursing home abuse and neglect is not always easy to identify using an inspection report. It is always a good idea for relatives to visit their loved ones regularly and closely monitor the quality of care a nursing home resident receives.

If you believe your elderly or disabled loved one was physically assaulted while residing at a nursing home located in Illinois, please give the dedicated lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. a call at (312) 924-7575. Our competent Chicago nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys are available 24 hours per day, every day of the week to help you protect the rights of your senior friends and family members. For a free consultation with a caring advocate, do not hesitate to contact Abels & Annes, P.C. through the law firm’s website.

More Blogs:

CMS to Publish Additional Data Regarding Nursing Home Deficiencies in Illinois and Elsewhere, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, April 18, 2013
U.S. Senate Considering Bill That May Keep Elderly Out of Nursing Homes in Illinois, Nationwide, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, April 15, 2013
Additional Resources:

Son seeks justice, changes after mother dies in nursing home, by Jody Barr, wistv.com

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