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Nursing Home Abuse

Nursing Home Abuse

Even the federal government knows nursing homes are hurting and killing people!

So one plus of having billions of our tax dollars going to pay for Granny’s nursing home stay (Medicare pays first 100 days typically and then if Granny qualifies, Medicaid pays the remainder) is that the feds keep a close eye on their money. And last year, the feds released a four year study that…[Read More]

Criminal conviction stands for neglect in group home

In November of last year a Southside Virginia group home operator was convicted and sentenced for criminal abuse and neglect for failing to obtain sufficient medical care for an injured group home resident. The Court of Appeals in Virginia, has just upheld the court’s conviction. Often we will receive calls from family members whose loved…[Read More]

Nursing Homes can be Bad for your Health

Did you know that more than 1 out of every 5 (22%) Medicare beneficiaries experience lasting harm from their stay in a nursing home? Did you know that nearly two-thirds (59%) of the above “adverse events” were deemed preventable by physicians who reviewed the circumstances which lead to the residents’ harm? Did you know that…[Read More]

Please, go with your gut and call 911

Nursing homes are interesting places. They (by law and definition) have health care available 24 hours a day, and yet, sometimes it is not enough. Sometimes, nursing home residents get sicker and need immediate emergency help from a hospital. I have had more than one (probably 20) families tell me that when they expressed concern…[Read More]

Hope in Virginia to increase number of nurses in nursing homes

I am an optimist. I am not naïve, so I know it is very unlikely the following Bill presented by Vivian Watts will become law in Virginia this year, but I remain an optimist. HB 568 would require nursing homes to meet certain basic staffing levels of CNAs and LPNS — they would now be…[Read More]

Who is at fault when someone is abused or neglected in a nursing home?

I was speaking with a bright, beautiful, and smart young woman this week who is a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) in a local nursing home. As she explains it, it is her job to bathe, dress, feed, turn, toilet, and care for 40 nursing home patients. Yes, you heard that right. She has 20 rooms…[Read More]

Over-Medication of Virginia Nursing Home Residents

The over-medication of nursing home patients is a major problem.

By overmedication, I don’t mean too many pills for various acute or chronic conditions – but rather, whether patients are given too much of a medication such that their behavior was altered, or their behavior subdued.

Think overdose. Think somnolent, sleepy, not easy to awake, “out of it,” drugged, etc.

The U.S. Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services has been encouraging nursing home physicians to find alternatives for the overuse of anti-psychotics in elderly patients. Doctors were prescribing drugs like Haldol, Seroquel, or Abilify to dementia patients despite warnings that such medications are not approved for use in elderly populations.

What happens when nursing home residents get too many antipsychotic drugs?

[Read More]

Virginia Public Radio: “On Elder Abuse and Signs of Neglect”

This morning Virginia Public Radio hosted a 1 hour show on Financial Abuse of Virginia’s Elderly population.

The show will be available online next week, and we will certainly share it with you when it is available.

Callers from across the Commonwealth shared stories where loved ones, neighbors and friends had been taken advantage of by other relatives, home health workers, medical providers, friends and sometimes even strangers.

I shared a personal story on the air about a home health aid that attempted to take money from my mother after gaining access to personal information. Turns out the home health aid had a significant criminal history which was un-detected by the home health agency because her convictions were in other states.

Elder abuse and neglect is very real in Virginia. The panelists on today’s show stated over 20,000 reports a year of abuse are made to local agencies and state employees suspect only 20% of the abuse is actually being reported. That means 100,000  incidents a year.

[Read More]