In a recent report produced by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Pennsylvania was rated as 1 of the 5 worst states for quality of care in nursing homes. *Source: http://www.elderbranch.com (5 Best and Worst States for Quality of Care in Nursing Homes)
When nursing homes provide low quality care, residents are often neglected or abused. However, even in the best Pennsylvania nursing homes, neglect and abuse may still happen. Many of the residents’ rights are often violated.
The Federal Nursing Home Reform Act (the Act) creates a set of minimum standards of care and rights for people living in certified nursing facilities. Pennsylvania nursing homes that receive federal funds must comply with the Act, which also lays out nursing home residents’ rights in the Resident’s Bill of Rights. Some of those rights include:
- The right to choose a physician and to use a pharmacy of the resident’s choice.
- The right to have personal and medical records treated as confidential.
- The right to be treated with dignity and respect.
- The right to be free from mental, physical and sexual abuse, exploitation, neglect, and involuntary seclusion.
- The right to be free from restraints.
- The right to voice a grievance without retaliation.
If you suspect that your loved one’s rights are being violated or that they are being abused or neglected in a nursing home or other care facility in PA, take the following steps:
Call 911 or local law enforcement. If your loved one is in immediate danger, call 911 or the local police for immediate help. Also, if you suspect that your loved one has been physically or sexually assaulted, you should also not hesitate in filing a police report.
Talk to the nursing home administrator or management. If the danger is not immediate, talk to the nursing home administrator about your suspicions of your loved one being abused. For example, if your loved one has unexplained bruises or marks on his/her body, tell the administrators about your concerns. The home administrator should address your concerns promptly and conduct an investigation.
File a report with the local Ombudsman’s Office. You can also report your suspicions to the local Ombudsman’s office. Your report will then prompt a state investigation into the allegations. Click here to locate your local Ombudsman’s office.
Talk to a Pennsylvania nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer. You should also contact an experienced Pennsylvania nursing home abuse lawyer before or after you file a report with the nursing home administrator and local Ombudsman’s office. Sometimes, the home administrator may not provide you with satisfactory explanations or answers, or the investigation may drag on. A nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer can help you understand your loved one’s legal rights and help you make sure that a thorough investigation is conducted. If there is abuse or neglect, the lawyer can help your loved one file a legal claim and recover financial compensation for the abuse he/she endured.
Pennsylvania & New Jersey Nursing Home Accident & Abuse Lawyers
If you or a loved one was abused in a nursing home or other care facility in Pennsylvania or New Jersey, please call our nursing home abuse and negligence lawyers for a free, no obligation consultation. (215) 985-0777
Our lawyers are skilled at handling nursing home negligence, abuse and assault cases in the Pennsylvania area, including Philadelphia, Montgomery County, Delaware County, and Bucks County. Our lawyers also handle nursing home accident cases in the New Jersey area.
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