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Insufficient Staffing in Nursing Homes

Understaffed Nursing Homes – Contra Costa County

Overview

Understaffed nursing home and nursing home abuses hurt employees and patients alike at facilities in Contra Costa County and throughout the state of California. Nursing homes and facilities provide care for some of our most vulnerable citizens, and violations of the laws and standards that protect our elders could constitute egregious abuses.

Nursing Assistants

In addition to the laws and regulations in place for registered nurses and directors of nursing, there are laws that guide and regulate the role of nursing assistants in nursing homes and care facilities. Every Medicaid and Medicare certified nursing home has a duty “to provide sufficient staff” and to maintain “the highest possible level of physical, mental, and psychosocial well-being of each resident.”

Nursing assistants are often called in when nurses are overworked, but nursing assistants are neither qualified nor responsible to do the work of a registered nurse. Officially, a nursing assistant’s duties and responsibilities involve daily non-medical care of nursing home residents.

Unfortunately, some nursing home employers find that it is less costly to hire nursing assistants to perform the work of certified nurses, and in doing so endanger the health, safety, and well-being of their residents, in addition to placing undue burdens and inappropriate responsibilities on the nursing assistants and aides.

If you are a nursing aide or nursing assistant in Concord, Martinez, San Pablo, Walnut Creek, or elsewhere in Contra Costa County and suffering from employment violations or nursing home understaffing, contact The Evans Law Firm in San Francisco at 415-441-8669 for a free and confidential consultation, or email info@evanslaw.com.

Overtime Pay Violations in Nursing Homes

By California law, all nurses and staff in Contra Costa County are entitled to overtime pay. Yet it has become unacceptably commonplace for employers in nursing homes and care facilities to deny their workers overtime pay using illegal tactics such as “alternative work weeks.”

In an “alternative work week,” an employee works a full-time (40 hour) work-week but works for fewer than 5 days a week. This means the employee works over 8 hours on the days worked. California law requires overtime pay for all hours worked over 8 per day, even if the weekly total amounts to 40 hours or fewer. In addition, double-time pay is required for any time worked over 12 hours per day. If you are employed in Concord, Martinez, San Pablo, Walnut Creek, or elsewhere in Contra Costa County and are paid less than over-time for working over 8 hours a day, you may be the victim of a wage and hourly violation.

Conclusion

Nursing homes and care facilities must abide by federal and state regulations for staffing and wage and hourly practices. Any institution that does not do so is in potential violation of California or federal law. These laws and rules exist for the benefit of both employees and residents in nursing homes, and almost certainly directly affect the quality and standard of care provided at these facilities. California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform provides useful statistics and reviews of facilities across Contra Costa County and California; these are helpful resources in the decision about nursing home residence and care.

If you or a loved one are concerned about nursing home abuse or wage and hourly issues in Contra Costa County or the San Francisco Bay Area, contact the Evans Law Firm at 415-441-8669 or email info@evanslaw.com for a free and confidential consultation.

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