Watchdog Group Finds Neglect & Squalor In South Carolina Assisted Living Facilities

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A report from the non-profit group, Protection and Advocacy for People with Disabilities, paints an ugly picture of the living conditions found in South Carolina assisted living facilities.  The report entitled “No Place To Call Home” was completed after a 14 month investigation into assisted-living and analysis of state documents and resident complaints.

After reading the report, most assisted living facilities bear no resemblance to any home-like environment.  The report completed by volunteers details the following findings:

  • Residents abused by facility staff, a two-by-four was used to physically abuse a resident.
  • Unsanitary living conditions, at one facility buckets of used hypodermic needles were seen in a main living area.
  • Convicted ‘sex offenders’ working at the assisted living facilities.
  • Faulty equipment, no door knobs on doors that consequently allowed people to be locked in the facilities.
  • Faulty air-conditioning systems, some residents were forced to sleep in bedrooms that were 82-degrees.

“Our hope is to prevent even more people from living in squalor, suffering abuse and neglect or even dying due to lack of oversight,” said Gloria Prevost, executive director of Protection and Advocacy for People with Disabilities.

Currently, there are more than 16,000 South Carolina residents living in about 500 assisted living facilities.

Assisted Living Centers vs. Nursing Homes

Most assisted living facilities provide a community living environment for seniors where the facility provides some level of supervision and meal preparation. Unlike nursing homes (that provided skilled nursing services), most assisted living facilities provide only a limited amount medical care.  Consequently, most states provide far less regulation of assisted living facilities compared to their nursing home peers.

Resources:

When It Comes To Governmental Oversight, Assisted Living Residents Are On Their Own, Nursing Homes Abuse Blog, February 5, 2009

 

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