misconceptions of nursing home negligence and abuse

1. It is illegal for a home to retaliate against a resident for a loved one complaining about the quality of care.
2. It is illegal for the home to remove your loved one from the nursing home other than for limited reasons and only after following very specific procedures.
3. The long term care facility may not restrain a patient without a physician’s order and only as a last resort. Restraints may not be used for the nursing home’s convenience or as a form of discipline.
4. Long Term Care patients do not always fall. The home has a responsibility to prevent accidents. There are many reasonable measures the nursing home can take to try to prevent falls. These include alarms, low beds, floor mats, body pads, proper shoes, and a number of other measures.
5. You do not have to sign an arbitration agreement. Generally, a nursing home is not permitted to refuse admission because of a patient or family member’s refusal to sign an arbitration agreement. Arbitration is a proceeding where you agree to give up your right to a jury trial and instead agree to resolve any dispute against the facility in a private proceeding.
Many homes now ask residents or family members to sign an arbitration agreement when the resident is admitted to the facility. We suggest that under no circumstances should you sign an arbitration agreement. A home may not require you sign the arbitration agreement as a condition of admission. If they do, REFUSE. Again, there is absolutely no benefit to you or the resident to sign an arbitration agreement. Arbitration agreements only benefit the nursing home. If a dispute arises you can, after consultation with an attorney, agree to arbitrate the dispute. But, under no circumstances do we suggest that you sign an arbitration agreement when you admit your family member to a Long Term Care facility.
This article has been prepared for informational purposes only and not as legal advice. The reading of this article does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. An attorney-client relationship does not begin until the attorney is hired to represent your claim in writing. Please do not act upon any information read within this article without first seeking legal counsel within your state.