Header graphic for print

Nursing Homes Abuse Blog

By Jonathan Rosenfeld

Why Sexual Abuse Happens In Nursing Homes

Posted in Sexual Abuse & Assault

Sexual Abuse in Nursing HomesWhen we think about nursing home abuse, the first things that come to mind are incidents of neglect that lead to complications such as malnourishment, dehydration and bed sores. We don’t want to imagine the possibility that our loved ones could be the victims of assault or sexual abuse. The amount of incidents that are being reported that related to alleged sexual abuse in nursing homes is alarming, however, and despite our best efforts to deny it, sexual abuse is a growing problem in nursing homes.

High Rate of Incidents, Low Rate of Arrest

Between the years of 2007 and 2010, in Chicago, IL, there were eighty-six reported incidents that involved some form of sexual abuse. Of those eighty-six reports, only a single incident led to an arrest. More surprising was the fact that there were nine incidents that happened in nursing homes in Chicago that were never reported to the police and another incident which was reported months after the fact. Nursing homes are required by law to report cases of criminal sexual assault immediately.

Why the Elderly are a Target for Sexual Abuse

Perpetrators often target the elderly because they are unable to fight back due to frailty and are unlikely to be taken seriously when they make an accusation. Many cases of sexual abuse that involve nursing home staff involve patients that may already be suffering from dementia or a mental illness. The abuser will quickly deny any accusations and claim that the patient is suffering from hallucinations or is confused. It is also much easier to restrain and intimidate the elderly, which means unfortunately that they make for easier prey in the eyes of sexual predators.

Signs of Assault

If a patient has unexplained bruises that the responsible caregiver tries to attribute to the natural aging process, it is possible that the person is being restrained and or assaulted. In the event of genital bruising or bleeding, the caregiver might provide the excuse that the injuries happened while inserting a catheter. Bruises to the abdomen are another sign that the victim was restrained unnecessarily and that foul play was involved.

Relation of Under-staffing to Sexual Abuse

Of the eighty-six cases of sexual assault reported in nursing homes in Chicago between 2007 and 2010, only a handful involved a perpetrator who was a visitor or staff member. The majority of sexual assault in nursing homes occurs when a resident abuses another resident. The number of these incidents is significantly greater in facilities that are understaffed due to the inability of the small staff to successfully monitor all of the patients under its care. Visitors and residents are able to wander the facility more freely without detection and more sexual crimes are committed as a result.

Protecting Elderly Nursing Home Patients From Sexual Abuse

Ensuring that the home your loved one is admitted to is properly staffed is the first step toward protecting him or her against sexual abuse. Well-staffed facilities are more likely to notice suspicious behavior and intervene in the event that a resident, staff member or visitor is in a place that he or she is not supposed to be. Paying attention to the physical signs is also important. Don’t always take a staff member’s word for it if you are told that the bruises on your loved one’s arms or abdomen are caused by aging and if there are any injuries whatsoever to the genitals, demand an investigation.

Sexual abuse in nursing homes is a difficult subject to talk about, but denying that it happens or remaining silent will never make the problem go away. Before you decide on a nursing home, make sure that it is properly staffed and that the staff is well trained in order to prevent sexual abuse and other forms of nursing home abuse such as neglect. If you have any reason at all to suspect that your loved one is being abused sexually while under the care of a nursing home, contact an experienced injury lawyer with experience prosecuting sexual abuse cases to give the case proper consideration and to conduct a formal investigation.


What Must Be Proven To Win A Nursing Home Neglect Lawsuit?

Posted in Neglect

Nursing Home Lawsuit and How to WinNursing home neglect cases are considered medical malpractice lawsuits. Medical malpractice lawsuits are among the most difficult a lawyer will ever handle. A nursing home negligence case requires the patient, the “plaintiff,” to prove that his or her nursing home, residential care facility, or caretaker, the “defendant,”, deviated so far from what is accepted as “standard” care and treatment that the law considers them to have been “negligent.”

The plaintiff is also required to prove that the nursing home’s negligence was a primary cause of the injury that the plaintiff has suffered. Your case must be proven by expert testimony. Simply making a mistake or getting a bad result is not enough – the nursing home neglect attorney must prove that there was negligence and that negligence led directly to your injury. Yes, it’s true. Nursing home and residential care facilities sometimes “get away with” negligence because the injury that they caused is not severe.

Nursing home patients and their family members must also remember that just because serious injury or wrongful death at a Michigan nursing home does not mean that “negligence” occurred. In the tragic event that there was a death involved, the nursing home injury attorney will file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the family members. These cases can take a year or more in the courthouse to conclude so great patience from the client is needed. Most nursing home malpractice cases settle “out of court,” rather than going through to a jury trial.

If you or a family member suffer injuries or have lost a loved one due to nursing home neglect, call an experienced attorney immediately to discuss your case. Most injuries are never reported or discovered in nursing home neglect cases. Do not become a victim of abuse and make sure to report all signs of neglect to protect you, your loved one, and all other patients who are residents of that particular nursing home.

For additional information view our Michigan nursing home law page.

Woman’s Death Highlights Risk of Financial Fraud for Elderly

Posted in Economics

Death of Woman Shows High Risk of FraudThe death of a woman last fall at Park Pointe Village retirement community in the Rock Hill area could have been prevented, representatives of the woman’s estate say in a lawsuit. The suit charges that the death of Pauline Cook, 82, could have been avoided if employees and staff at the OakBridge Terrace assisted living facility, which is in Park Pointe Village, had taken action against an employee suspected of theft and forgery. According to news reports, police arrested a nurse’s assistant and say she confessed to killing Cook and trying to cover it up.

Representatives of Cook’s estate say she complained to employees of OakBridge Terrace and to police about someone forging checks in her name. According to the lawsuit, employees at OakBridge Terrace helped identify nurse’s aide Braquette Walton as the forger, and helped Cook make a complaint to the Rock Hill police. However, the suit alleges, employees should have then taken further steps to ensure that Walton couldn’t gain access to the facility or Cook.

Pauline Cook’s death is an example of a growing nationwide trend of not only elder abuse , but elder financial abuse. Officials all over the country are trying to rein in financial crimes against the elderly, which some experts label an epidemic. The rising numbers of elderly and the recession mean that more and more seniors are at risk of financial abuse. According to the Washington Post, caregivers and family members are often the most likely abusers — and elderly women are more likely to be targeted than elderly men.

However, as a recent report from Illinois shows, even well-meaning family members can be victims of financial scams targeting the elderly. Only time will tell if the spotlight on the dangers of elder financial abuse can actually help stop these crimes. Meanwhile, the elderly and their loved ones must remain aware of this problem and hold abusers accountable for their crimes.

Elder Abuse Statistics

Elder abuse is a horrifying breach of the trust that older adults and their families place in their caregivers. The National Center on Elder Abuse estimates that 1 to 2 million adults over the age of 65 have been abused, neglected or exploited in some way by a caregiver. Yet only one out of every six incidents is reported, perhaps reflecting the helplessness of some abused elders.

Documentary Demonstrates Lack of Oversight with Assisted Living Industry

Posted in Assisted Living Facilities

Film shows lack of attention to assisted livingAssisted Living for Elderly Family Members

Assisted Living Homes have become very common in the United States. Even though, a few schools of thought in our society are highly critical of this way of living, elders who are unable to take care of themselves have no other option but to choose an assisted living facility to fulfill their needs.

What exactly does such a facility do? Even if you have never heard of assisted living, the term itself gives away the idea. Say, for instance, you have a relative who needs constant help to do even the basic personal tasks like changing clothes, bathing, washing hands, taking medications etc. If this relative has no one to aid him with these chores, he can choose to live in an assisted facility. This facility hires helpers who then give a hand to these elders in bathing, changing and doing most of their personal work.

However, these facilities and their administrations tend to create an impression that they are providing care and help round the clock when that is hardly the case. In fact, in most facilities, help is minimized to a few hours a day only, during which the resident is told to cram all their tasks that they want done.

With limited staff on duty and with a motto to only ‘assist and not nurse’, assisted living homes have recently been criticized for not showing enough and adequate care for residents.

Assisted Living vs. Nursing Homes

By the sound of them, assisted living and nursing homes both seem the same i.e. homes for elderly residents who need help. However, there is a wide difference in the kind of care they provide, which is unknown to most family members who decide to leave their elders in one of these facilities without pondering over the best one.

The same mistake was made by a son who wanted to leave his mother in an elderly home so she could get some help with her chores. However, he failed to realize that it was important to match the kind of care his old mother needed with the level of attention and care each of these facilities was ready to provide. The documentary that told his story went on to elaborate the guilt and regret the son feels even today for not making the best possible decision for his mother.

The only way to ensure one does make the right decision is to have a thorough understanding of what each facility does and what is suitable for the elder under your care. For instance, if the elder does not only need care and assistance but also requires 24/7 medical help, a nursing home is a better fit because qualified nurses are on regular duty. Unlike an assisted living home where only physical help is given, a nursing home is required to carry out regular checkups and report any signs and symptoms of illnesses or delayed response.

Therefore, had this individual’s mother been in a nursing home, he and the doctors on duty would have been informed of the pressure ulcers forming on her back, which went unnoticed at the assisted living home and later became the cause of her death.


The economic pressure to work at maximum capacity and have all beds full plagues every nursing home and assisted living center. Therefore, the owners of these facilities always want to take in patients and residents without caring much of the criteria needed to be followed for resident’s admission. Nonetheless, the responsibility of making the right choice of living for your loved ones falls on your shoulders and so does the regret for failing to do so.

Recent Court Ruling Expands Protection For Seniors

Posted in Nursing Home Abuse

Court Rules to Protect SeniorsElder Abuse – A Norm in Care Facilities

If you tuned into local news channels for daily news, you would know that stories of elder abuse in care facilities are not new. In 2010 alone, 36% of Nursing homes in America were accused of abusing the elderly. This problem surfaced a while ago and has been a hot topic of discussion in legal and medical circles. So much so that a number of lawsuits and court rulings have gone in favor of families and individuals fighting for compensation on behalf of a family member who has gone through such pain and suffering.

However, not everyone in our society has a soft heart for the elderly. A very recent example has been reported and tried in court from two hospitals in Arizona that failed to provide adequate care for patients whose families have now sued the hospitals. During the trial, the attorneys of the hospitals went on to say that the legislative clause for elder care, namely the Adult Protective Services Act does not apply to hospitals and is only limited to elder homes and care givers appointed in those centers. For them, the clause of the Act was ‘fuzzy and unclear’ which meant no rules had been violated.

In response to this flimsy claim, the ruling judge, Patricia Orozco, said that the clause applies to everyone ‘who gives care.’ Had any specific entities been mentioned in it, the attorney’s claim would have been worth considering.

The Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association, which is entrusted to keep an eye on and manage all health and care givers, had no statement in response to the court ruling. With such a state of the best hospitals in the country, one wonders what all goes on in smaller elder care facilities that do not make it to the limelight too often.

Do Elders Deserve Increased Protection?

The case mentioned above is a ripe example of how flawed elder care giving has become even in the most top-notch hospitals and the most civilized societies. For families that look for old-age care facilities and pay handsome amounts to ensure proper care, such stories are hard to accept; more so because in the face of demanding lifestyles, hiring caregivers is sometimes the only way to do justice to their own lives and those of their elders.

Therefore, it is about time adult abuse became a blatant crime that is immediately recorded and reported.

The demand for old homes and caregivers has seen a steady rise in the last two decades. However, ruling such cases as mentioned above in the favor of the plaintiff’s family is probably what is needed to remind caregivers of their oath and primary responsibility. Moreover, winning an elder abuse case provides adequate financial cushion for a family that has already spent thousands of dollars on medical bills and hiring caregivers.

Therefore, extending support to victims and ensuring their safety has become a big concern in facilities that were previously trusted with taking care of the people who strengthen the fabric of our societies. For Judge Orozco, inferring the law according to the hospitals’ claims will render it useless and cripple it in times when such abuse is questioned.


Stage Four Pressure Sores: Indication Of Inattentive Care

Posted in Stages of Bed Sores

Inattentive Care Shown in Pressure SoresDespite the perception that pressure sores, also known as bedsores, shouldn’t be a common problem in urban areas, pressure sore lawsuit filings in large, modern cities– such as Chicago– are more common than you may think. Do not allow yourself to be misled if a facility or caregiver insists that the development of pressure sores is just an inevitable fact of life and growing old. The truth of the matter is that pressure sores develop very slowly over time and the presence of stage four pressure sores is usually the result of inattentive caregivers over a long-term period.

Treatment of Early Stage Pressure Sores Necessary to Prevent Complications Down the Road

To understand the severity of neglect that is required in order to allow an elderly patient to develop stage four pressure sores, we need to understand how pressure sores develop and how they can be prevented or treated in their early stages. When a patient is confined to a wheelchair or hospital bed, continued pressure to the joints and areas of the body that have continued contact with the hard surface create pressure that limits the circulation to the affected area. Because the blood is cut off to the area, the cells are deprived of much needed oxygen and begin to slowly die off. This process takes time to occur and is typically exhibited in four different stages.

  • Stage One— The onset of a pressure sore is very mild and the patient may complain that the area itches or hurts. The affected area will be visibly red and may feel firm when it is touched. Stage one pressure sores are easily treated by removing the pressure on the surrounding area and allowing the area to heal itself naturally.
  • Stage Two— Stage Two pressure sores mostly resemble blisters and may have a red or purple discoloration. At this point, the skin has begun to die and peel away due to the lack of oxygen to the surrounding cells. Stage Two pressure sores are considered open wounds and therefore present a risk of infection if left untreated. Like Stage One pressure sores, however, Stage Two pressure sores are easy to treat when they are caught and the recovery is fairly quick.
  • Stage Three— When a pressure sore has been allowed to progress to Stage Three, the tissue loss has accelerated and ligaments and tendons are now beginning to deteriorate. The appearance of a Stage Three pressure sore is that of a deep and open wound.
  • Stage Four— At this point, cellular degeneration has reached the bone and can begin to affect the joints. These wounds are incredibly difficult to treat and are highly prone to infections that include gangrene and flesh eating bacteria. (Read more here)

Stage Four Pressure Sores Are The End Result of Inferior Care– Over An Extended Period

Due to how noticeable a pressure sore is even at Stage One, it is highly improbable that a Stage Four pressure sore would form as the result of the normal aging process— as some facilities will try to have you believe. The prevention and treatment of bedsores requires very little more than moving the patient in order to relieve the pressure and simple first aid and care. Therefore, if your loved one has developed a Stage Three or Stage Four pressure sore, it is more than likely that neglect is responsible for the sore being allowed to progress to that stage.

Even in ‘Sophisticated’ Medical Facilities Advanced Pressure Sores Persist

Even in so called ‘big cities’ like Chicago, pressure sore lawsuit cases are more common than most people expect from well-regarded medical facilities in an urban area. The majority of neglect in nursing home facilities is the result of those facilities being understaffed or improper training of the personnel tasked with giving care to patients. By simply making sure a patient has not been allowed to remain in the same position for more than two hours, the majority of pressure sore cases are prevented or treated quickly before they can progress.

Legal Assistance for Pressure Sore Victims & Families

If your loved one has been diagnosed with a Stage Three or Stage Four pressure sore in a Chicago medical facility you likely have legal rights to recover damages for the accompanying pain, disability and medical expenses. An attorney who has experience prosecuting nursing home negligence and medical malpractice cases can assess you case and advise you of your legal options.

Patients Who Wander Require Special Care From Facilities

Posted in Elopement & Wandering

Wanderers Need Specialized CareElderly patients who have conditions such as dementia, Alzheimer’s disease or other mental disorders that cause confusion and memory loss have the tendency to wander aimlessly. The act of wandering has been known to contribute to some cases of elderly persons walking aimlessly outside of the facility and disappearing without a trace. Generally, wandering results in patients putting themselves unknowingly in harm’s way or injuring themselves due to fatigue. Nursing home staff are responsible for knowing when a patient shows the tendency to wander and giving special care and attention to that patient in order to keep him or her safe.

Potential Hazards Related To Patients Who Wander

Elderly patients who wander may encounter any number of hazards if not under proper supervision. They may wander into areas that are dangerous— such as stair wells, construction zones, restricted areas that contain dangerous chemicals or outside of the facility and into traffic. Many patients who wander have no recollection of where they were when they began to wander and easily get lost and forget their way back to where they are supposed to be. Other hazards may present themselves in the form of people— either other residents with mental illnesses that become hostile or visitors with ill intent.

What Causes a Person to Wander?

Diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease affect patients’ memories and may cause them to forget where they are. Having forgotten where they are, anxiety ensues shortly after and causes the person to want to find a familiar place in order to try and figure out where he or she is at. This motivates the patient to wander until he or she can remember where he or she is and how to return home. However, most of the time, the patient’s memory never returns and he or she will wander until a fall occurs or the person wanders into a dangerous area and gets hurt.

How Can Nursing Homes Prevent Wandering?

It is often thought that restraining patients who have the tendency to wander will prevent their aimless wandering, but it can actually contribute to the need to wander instead, causing the patient to wander the moment that he or she is able to. The best course of action is not to prevent the actual wandering, but instead to monitor the patient closely and make sure that he or she is unable to find him or herself in areas such as stairwells, restricted areas or outside where he or she can disappear and never return. Supervision is the best treatment for wanderers and when it is known that a person has the tendency to do so, nursing home staff should create a plan that addresses the patient’s needs and condition.

Who is Responsible when a Wandering Person is hurt?

The care facility trusted with the care of the patient is obligated to ensure that the person is unable to wander aimlessly without supervision. Failure to keep patients from wandering off the premise or into dangerous area is a punishable offense that carries fines and other penalties with it. In the event that the patient is harmed due to wandering into an unsafe area, the nursing home is obligated to pay damages to the patient or patient’s family.

Holding Facilities Responsible For a Wandering Incident

It is always unfortunate when a loved one loses his or her cognitive functions and begins to wander both mentally and physically. In order to help our loved ones retain their dignity in their last years, it is important to make sure that nursing homes provide patients with mental illnesses with the care and attention that is required to keep them safe and healthy without exacerbating the situation and giving them more reason to wander.

In the event that a loved one wanders and is hurt or manages to leave the facility and disappear, the nursing home in charge of his or her care is responsible and should be held accountable. By holding care facilities accountable for wandering incidents, we can encourage nursing homes to continue to find better ways to address the needs of elderly patients with dementia, Alzheimer’s disease and similar conditions.


Nursing Home Patients Remain Real Victims Of Budget Cuts

Posted in Neglect

Patients are the Victims of Nursing Home careSomeone once told me that a society should be judged on how well it takes care of its poor, its veterans and its elderly. We are currently failing when it comes to the overall regard that we have for the elderly in our society. After making severe cuts to the Medicare/Medicaid system and other cuts that have specifically targeted nursing homes and the elderly, Republican lawmakers wish to enact even more cuts— while so many nursing homes remain understaffed. We’ve taken so much already from our elderly and need to ask how much more they should be forced to pay while others receive breaks or avoid responsibility because of loopholes that allow them to.

Cuts Already Enacted

Since 2009, nursing home care has been the target of cuts on both a state and national level. Here are the cuts we have seen in the last three years so far and their impact on nursing care.

  • Forty states have cut or frozen all payments related to skilled nursing facility care.
  • The nursing care sector is currently looking at $48 billion in cuts between 2012 and 2021 with more coming if current legislators have their way.
  • The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 cut $3 billion in Medicare/Medicaid funding over the period of 2012 through 2021.
  • Nursing homes face another $782.3 million in cuts for the fiscal year 2014 due to sequestration threat.

How the Cuts are felt at Nursing Homes throughout the Nation 

It is not surprising to learn that medical care is expensive but the nursing home facility sector has the lowest margins in the entire healthcare industry. Many people are still unable to afford care without assistance and 57% of daily care is paid with funds from Medicare or Medicaid— a fact that advocates of more reliable nursing home care wish that lawmakers would consider before making cuts to funding. While patients struggle to pay for their care, the nursing facilities themselves often struggle with under-staffing issues that cannot be remedied because they are simply unable to hire additional staff if their facilities are not-for-profit nursing homes that rely on government funding.

The Ryan Budget and Other Suggested Cuts to Medicare Spending

After three years of enduring one cut after another, the nursing home sector is faced with the Ryan Budget which, if passed, will take another $3.3 billion from Medicare, Pell grants and other publicly funded programs in order to give tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans. In addition to these cuts, Republican lawmakers are suggesting making cuts to programs that pay into the skilled nursing facility sector in order to pay the bill to allowing college students to keep their low interest rates on student loans.

When nursing home facilities fail to take care of the elderly, they become liable when the well-being of their patients suffers. After enduring massive cuts, they must also pay damages if the care that they provide is inadequate or if their lack of staff contributes to negligence and abuse. Our nursing homes are in need of much improvement that can only come in the form of more qualified staff in the facilities that we trust our loved ones’ care to.

We need to decide whether our elderly are worth more to us than the wealthy in this country and take a stand against the constant barrage of cuts to programs that are already lacking. Rather than forcing nursing home facilities to cut back even more, we need to provide relief so that workers in nursing homes can be trained properly and the facilities can hire enough staff members to tend to the needs of their patients. I am still of the belief that a society will be judged by how it treats its elderly. When we look back on how our actions today affected nursing care for decades to come, will we look back with pride because we fought for our loved ones or try to hide our shame for allowing politicians to wage war on the people who matter most to us?


5 Steps To Reduce The Risk of Pressure Sores

Posted in Bed Sores, Pressure Sores, Decubitus Ulcers & Pressure Ulcers

Steps for Caregivers to follow for Nursing Home CarePressure sores can occur when a person has been laying in one position for too long. They are common for the elderly who are bedridden or sit in a wheelchair most of the day. They usually form where the bone sits close to the skin, such as ankles, back, heels, and hips. Pressure sores can become infected, which can be life threatening for the elderly. Use these 5 steps to make sure your loved one does not develop a pressure sore.

Keep Skin Clean And Dry

One way to keep pressure sores from developing is to make sure your loved one is regularly bathed and put back into a clean and dry bed.

Change Position Every 2 Hours

Moving a person into a different position every two hours can help prevent pressure sores. There are lifting devices that nursing homes and hospitals use to help prevent friction of the skin against sheets and blankets which can also help reduce pressure sores.

Use Support Surfaces

There are special pillows, mattresses, and cushions that can be used to help a person lie in different positions to avoid pressure sores and protect skin from damage. By using a pillow to prop an immobile person on their side, it can help relieve pressure on their back. These devices are often foam, air-filled, or water-filled and are especially useful for those people in wheelchairs.

Eat A Healthy Diet

If you think your loved one is at risk for pressure sores, make sure they are eating the right amount of calories and protein and getting the right amount of vitamins in their diet. Additionally, making sure they are properly hydrated is key for maintaining healthy skin. If your family member has trouble feeding him or herself, make sure there is someone there who can assist them.

Keep Wounds Clean and Dressed

If a pressure wound does occur, it’s important to keep the wound clean to prevent infection. Wash the wound with warm water and a mild soap. If the wound is open, use a saline solution as well. Always keep the wound dressed in order to promote healing and to keep infection out.

Proper Care Can Prevent Decubitus Ulcers

Pressure sores are preventable, and if they do happen, they can be treatable. Make sure to use the steps above to keep your family safe.

Nursing Home Employee’s Whistleblower Lawsuit Moves Forward

Posted in Nursing Home Falls
Whistleblower Lawsuit Going AheadThere were over 16,000 nursing homes in the U.S. by the year 2004, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with 1.7 million beds, of which 86 percent had been occupied. An elderly lives in a nursing home for an average of 2.5 years before eventually dying or leaving the home due to lack of funds given by the family.

The employees abuse thousands of these nursing home residents or patients every year. Most of these incidents are rarely ever reported. Since 66 percent of all nursing homes in America are for profit, the owners avoid reporting any incident that might give them a bad reputation. However, there is a rising number of whistleblower lawsuits being reported around America. Many employees of abusive nursing homes are coming forward with reports of the incidents, to the State Health Department.

Tennessee Nursing Home Employee Files Lawsuit

In 2013, a nursing home employee who worked as a licensed practical nurse was fired from his job after he found an elderly woman lying in a pile of urine and took photos of another elderly woman who had a severe bedsore. While reporting to the nursing home administration of the negligence in the nursing home, the employee was first suspended from his duties at the nursing home and then eventually fired. Later, the employee reported to the State Health Department with his witness reviews of the nursing home.

This report to the State Health Department opened up an investigation into the nursing home, instigating a whistleblower lawsuit. The nursing home was temporarily shut down to continue the investigation. The State Health Department released a long report with multiple violations of the federal guidelines provided in nursing homes and health care facilities. The nursing home owners filed a motion against the whistleblower lawsuit filed by the nursing home employee, which was overruled by the court.

Fraudulent Use of Government Funds by For-Profit Nursing Homes

A federal government reported that for-profit nursing homes make an average of $1.5 billion each year through over billing their patients. These patients are over billed for facilities that are never provided, by charging extra over the standard billing amount approved by the Federal government or by providing services that might not be necessary for the patient. Whistleblower lawsuits help the government find such fraudulent cases around America, reported by the people, residents or former employees of the nursing home on behalf of the government. By 2012, there were 120 cases pursued by the government prosecutors against nursing homes on fraudulent billing, starting from 2008.

With the rising amount of cases, such as the 2013 nursing home employee who was fired for taking a picture of an elderly woman’s bedsore, the government gives 15-30 percent of its recovery to such whistleblowers to protect them from retaliation by the nursing homes. These for-profit nursing homes are funded by the state government through taxpayers’ funds, but nursing home owners often abuse these funds by accepting bribes in exchange for referrals as well as buying drugs and medical devices from other companies.

Nursing Homes Abuse Blog