DOJ Launches Task Forces to Fight Substandard Nursing Home Care
Posted on behalf of Stewart Bell, PLLC on Apr 05, 2016 in Nursing Home Injury or Death
Millions of senior citizens reside in nursing homes across the United States. While each facility is expected to provide its residents with compassion and an acceptable level of care, many fall short of this expectation.
Residents of subpar nursing homes are often treated disrespectfully and given inadequate care, and instances of nursing home abuse and neglect become dangerously common.
In an effort to reduce incidents of elder abuse and neglect, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has created the Elder Justice Task Forces.
The forces consist of federal, state, and local prosecutors from ten different regions of the U.S., as well as numerous law enforcement officials and related agency representatives. The primary goal of the Elder Justice Task Forces is to target nursing home facilities that are not providing their residents with adequate care.
By bringing various agencies together, the DOJ hopes nursing homes that provide inadequate care or engage in fraudulent activities can be more easily identified, due to the effective sharing of information between agencies. The DOJ also hopes that issues can be addressed promptly by using coordinated efforts to best protect elderly citizens.
For several years, the DOJ has worked diligently to hold nursing homes accountable for providing adequate care to residents who receive Medicare and Medicaid benefits. The new Elder Justice Task Forces will continue this mission by ensuring elderly residents who are on government assistance receive the same level of care as residents with private pay insurance.
By bringing all agencies together, the DOJ feels substandard nursing homes can be targeted quickly, and effective measures can be initiated to prevent resident health from being compromised.
However, not everyone feels the creation of the Elder Justice Task Forces is beneficial. The American Health Care Association (AHCA) has expressed concern over the development of the forces, as it believes the new organization will portray the nursing home industry in a negative manner.
The AHCA is concerned the Elder Justice Task Forces will promote the idea that quality care delivered by nursing homes is on the decline, though recent data indicates that nursing home deficiencies have fallen.
Regardless of the debate, one thing is for certain—elderly citizens residing in nursing homes deserve to be treated with compassion and respect. If you suspect your loved one has been neglected or abused by nursing home staff, the accomplished nursing home abuse lawyers at Stewart Bell, PLLC will help you fight for the justice and compensation your loved one deserves.