New Nursing Home Regulations Aim to Reduce Elder Abuse
New federal regulations of nursing homes will provide residents and their families more involvement in deciding a resident’s care and granting them stronger rights when filing a complaint against a facility.
The regulations, issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), went into effect on Nov. 28, 2016 and will be implemented through different phases spanning a three year period. This will be the most extensive revision of nursing home regulations in 25 years.
The CMS is requiring all nursing homes that accept Medicare and Medicaid funding, which includes most facilities in the U.S., to strictly follow the new regulations in an effort to improve health and safety of the approximate 1.4 million residents under the care of these facilities.
The changes in nursing home regulations will also prevent facilities from forcing residents and their families to settle legal disputes through private arbitration. However, a court ruling has temporarily blocked the CMS’s attempt at banning forced arbitration until the lawsuit between the federal agency and the American Health Care Association (AHCA) has been settled.
Other requirements for nursing home facilities mentioned in the new CMS regulations include:
- Allowing residents to choose their meals, roommates and which visitors they are allowed to receive.
- Strengthening the grievance process and appointing an official to oversee complaints made by residents. All decisions must be made in writing.
- No longer discharging residents if they have filed for an appeal concerning their discharge.If a resident has applied for an insurance claim or Medicaid, he or she cannot be discharged for nonpayment or while appealing a claim denial. A state’s long-term-care-ombudsman must also obtain copies of any involuntary discharges for immediate review.
- Redefining elderly abuse to include financial exploitation, as well as preventing facilities from hiring individuals who have received past disciplinary action because of abuse, neglect, mistreatment or financial exploitation of residents.
- Having enough skilled and qualified workers on staff to provide adequate care for residents’ needs.
If your loved one has been abused while residing at a nursing home, contact a Milwaukee nursing home abuse lawyer at PKSD today to discuss taking legal action. We always provide a free, no obligation initial consultation and work on a contingency fee basis, which means we do not charge any legal fees unless you receive a fair outcome.
Call 877-877-2228 to speak with one of our attorneys about filing a claim.