Nursing Home Residents’ Rights
Greenville, Anderson, and Spartanburg, South Carolina, and Surrounding Counties
The thought that weighs heaviest on most families' minds when the time comes to place their elderly loved one in a nursing home is, will they be well taken care of?
Please contact The White Davis & White Law Firm if you suspect your elderly loved one’s rights have been violated.In 1987, the Nursing Home Reform Act was passed by the federal government. This act requires that certain services are provided to all nursing home residents and establishes a Residents' Bill of Rights. Nursing homes must be in compliance with all requirements outlined in order to be certified by the state to receive Medicare and Medicaid payments for the care of long-term patients.
- Required Services
- The required services specified by this act include:
- Periodic assessments for each resident
- Comprehensive care plans for each individual
- Nursing services
- Pharmaceutical services
- Dietary services
- Rehabilitation services
- Social services
- Monitoring of Nursing Homes
In order to monitor nursing home compliance, a legal certification process has been established. The state is required to conduct unannounced surveys which include interviewing residents a minimum of once every 15 months. During these surveys, residents' rights, services provided, quality of care and quality of life are all evaluated.
Facilities housing more than 120 beds are additionally required to retain the services of a full-time social worker. In order to enforce compliance with these requirements, one or all of the following sanctions may be imposed:
- State monitoring
- Temporary management
- Directed plan of correction
- Directed in-service staff training
- Denial of payment for all new Medicare and Medicaid admissions
- Denial of payment for all Medicare and Medicaid patients
- Civil monetary penalties
- Termination of the provider agreement
- Residents’ Bill of Rights
- The right to freedom from abuse, mistreatment, and neglect
- The right to freedom from physical restraints
- The right to privacy
- The right to accommodation of medical, physical, psychological, and social needs
- The right to participate in resident and family groups
- The right to be treated with dignity
- The right to exercise self-determination
- The right to communicate freely
- The right to participate in the review of one's care plan and to be fully informed in advance about any changes in care, treatment, or change of status in the facility
- The right to voice grievances without discrimination or reprisal
Adherence to the laws governing nursing homes has improved in many areas. However, major problems still exist. State surveyors whose job it is to enforce the laws are often inconsistent in conducting their inspections. The result is that nearly one in five nursing homes are being seriously negligent in one or more areas and the mistreatment of residents remains insufficiently controlled and penalized.
If you or someone you love is in a nursing home facility in the Greenville, Anderson, Spartanburg, or surrounding counties in South Carolina, and you feel they may be in danger or their rights may be violated, please contact our nursing home attorneys at The White Davis & White Law Firm immediately so that we may quickly begin investigation into these acts on your behalf.