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Federal Nursing Home Laws Protecting Seniors

As we age, many will require long-term care at a nursing facility. While we hope that the care we receive is top-notch, it is not always the case.

The Nursing Home Reform Act, passed in 1987, set the standards for nursing homes that receive Medicare or Medicaid funds. These laws are in place to ensure that residents receive adequate care and their rights are protected.

The personal injury attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center, LLC legally advocate for residents’ rights to protect their health and well-being. We can take immediate action by following federal law to hold nursing homes accountable for their actions and obtain the compensation residents deserve.

Contact our nursing home abuse lawyers at (800) 926-7565 or use the contact form to schedule a free consultation.

The Nursing Home Reform Act

The Act was passed in 1987 and is an essential piece of federal legislation that sets standards for nursing homes that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding. This nursing home act aims to ensure that resident rights are protected to ensure they receive adequate care.

When a family member requires long-term care at a caregiving home, it is essential that they can make their own choices and are fully informed of their options. It ensures that their life and safety are protected, and they receive the care they deserve.

The Purpose of the Act

The Nursing Home Reform Act aims to ensure that nursing homes provide their residents the necessary services and quality of health care. The federal government act requires that nursing homes create a written plan of care for each resident, which must be reviewed and updated regularly.

The care plan must be developed with the involvement of the resident, family members, and the resident’s physician. It must include the certain services and treatments that the resident requires.

The Act also requires that nursing homes provide the necessary staff and resources to ensure that residents receive the highest level of health care possible. It includes ensuring that there are enough nursing staff on duty at all times, and that residents have access to the necessary medical and nursing services they need.

Also, nursing homes, hospitals, family groups, and assisted living facilities must provide their residents a safe and sanitary living environment.

The Standards that Nursing Homes Must Meet

Nursing homes that receive Medicare and Medicaid funding must meet specific standards to ensure that they provide quality care to their residents.

These standards include ensuring that each resident receives certain services to attain or maintain their highest practicable physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being, which includes providing activities and social services that meet the needs and interests of each resident.

The Older Americans Act

The Older Americans Act is a federal law first enacted in 1965. This Act aims to promote the well-being of older adults by providing access to needed services and resources.

While the Older Americans Act does not explicitly address nursing homes, it provides funding for various services to help older adults remain independent and live in their homes.

Nursing Home Quality

When selecting a nursing facility for yourself or a loved one, quality is crucial, it refers to the level of care and services the caregivers provide residents.

How Nursing Homes are Evaluated for Quality

Nursing homes are evaluated for quality by various entities, including federal and state agencies, accreditation organizations, and consumer groups.

One of the primary ways that nursing homes are evaluated is through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Five-Star Rating System. This system rates nursing homes on a scale of one to five stars based on health inspections, staffing levels, and quality measures.

Complaint Investigations

If you suspect a caregiving center is violating nursing home laws, it is essential to take action. Initiating investigations are one way to hold nursing homes accountable for their actions and ensure that residents receive the care they deserve.

The Complaint Investigation Process

The complaint investigation process is initiated when a complaint is filed against a caregiving home. Various entities, including state survey agencies and ombudsman programs can conduct complaint investigations.

The nursing home will be inspected during an investigation to determine if it complies with federal and state standards.

The investigation may include interviews with staff and residents, a review of the nursing home’s policies and procedures, and a physical facility inspection. If the investigation finds that the facility violates nursing home laws, corrective action must address the issues.

How to File a Complaint if You Suspect a Violation of Federal Nursing Home Laws

If you suspect a caregiving facility is violating a resident’s legal rights, it is essential to take action. One way to file a complaint is by contacting your state survey agency responsible for regulating nursing homes and investigating complaints.

You can find the contact information for your state survey agency by visiting the Medicare website or contacting your state’s Department of Health.

You can also file a complaint through the nursing home’s ombudsman program, an advocacy program that protects resident rights. The ombudsman program can investigate complaints and work to resolve issues through mediation or other means.

Federal government law prohibits retaliation against residents or family members who file complaints against nursing homes or participate in the investigation process. Reporting the issue to the appropriate authorities is essential if you believe you or your loved one has been retaliated against.

Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer to Resolve Your Nursing Home Abuse Case

Were you or a loved one harmed by neglect or abuse by staff members, employees, or other residents in a nursing home? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and suffering.

At Nursing Home Law Center, LLC, our personal injury attorneys have years of experience representing clients in abuse and neglect cases. We offer a free consultation to discuss your case and determine your legal options.

Additionally, our attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning we only receive payment if we win your case. Call us at (800) 926-7565 to schedule a free consultation.


Client Reviews

Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was...

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After I read Jonathan’s Nursing Home Blog, I decided to hire him to look into my wife’s treatment at a local nursing home. Jonathan did a great job explaining the process and the laws that apply to nursing homes. I immediately felt at ease and was glad to have him on my side. Though the lawsuit...

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