As the name would suggest, nursing home fines are one of the tools available to state and federal agencies to get them to correct their practices. After all, a substantial fine would (or at least should) cause nursing homes to carefully reevaluate how they care for patients in order to avoid similar fines in the future.
But, what happens when these fines are so seemingly low in comparison to the type of violation or patient harm committed?
Patient harm and poor nursing practices aside, it only seems like human nature for facilities to take a closer look at instances that may have resulted in higher fines.
Call me cynical, but when I recently read about a Connecticut Nursing Home (Bishops Corner Skilled Nursing & Rehabilitation) receiving a measly $710 fine for two instances involving substantial errors relating to patient care. I cringed in disbelief as the fine seems distinctly out of whack with the type of infractions committed.
According to news reports, the Connecticut Department of Public Health discovered that the facility failed to provide one mentally retarded patient with the medication prescribed by her doctor and a second situation where workers improperly used a mechanical Hoyer lift on patient resulting in the patient falling from the machine and hitting their head on the floor.
While, I’m sure the Department carefully considered the circumstances before dispensing their fines, I hope the fine serves as ‘enough’ of a prod for this facility to improve its patient care.
Related Nursing Homes Abuse Blog Entries: