When it comes to putting your loved one in a nursing home, you want the best. Unfortunately, many nursing home chains in California are nowhere near “the best.” The Sacramento Bee investigated the performance of nursing home chains in California by looking at 46 staffing, inspection, quality-of-care, and independent rating measures and learned that across the board, large nursing home chains tended to perform below expected state averages in quality-of-care measures and staffing measures.
In California, there are 120,000 licensed beds in nursing homes. About half of those are owned by 25 for-profit nursing home chains. 10 of those chains performed below the state average in quality-of-care categories, 20 of the 25 performed below state averages in at least three out of five staffing measures, and the largest chain that performed below state average, was recently granted permission to purchase 19 more facilities – in spite of the poor staffing performance. In addition to poor staffing and quality-of-care performance, these nursing home chains are more likely to log a high amount of complaints (such as for abuse) and deficiencies than other nursing homes.
Staffing is a huge concern for many nursing homes. A lot of elder abuse occurs because of inefficient and inadequate staffing in nursing homes. If there are not enough nurses to help take care of the numerous patients, it is a given that elderly residents will suffer for it. Their medications may not be delivered on time, they may fall when they shouldn’t have, emergencies or calls for help may go unanswered, bed-ridden residents may develop deadly pressure sores because there was no one to reposition, etc. Even so, having enough nurses is not enough – the nurses have to be adequately and properly trained.
For-profit nursing homes currently dominate as the worst performers in terms of quality-of-care, inspection, and staffing measures. They log high rates of turnover rates for staffing, insufficient staffing, numerous complaints and deficiencies, and overall poor quality-of-care of residents. Non-profit nursing homes, or nursing homes run by hospitals, on the other hand, rank at the top.
Regardless of which nursing home you choose for your loved one, do your research. Even if it takes time and is slow going, finding the best nursing home for your loved ones is worth it. Make sure there is adequate staff on hand to tend to your loved one’s needs. Make sure the staff know what they are doing. Check to see that the facility itself is in good shape. The California Department of Public Health keeps records for individual nursing homes, but not for nursing home chains, so people thinking about admitting their loved ones into a nursing home chain should carefully and thoroughly investigate before committing.
If you or a loved one has suffered from elder abuse in a nursing home, contact Evans Law Firm, Inc. at 415-441-8669 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a free and confidential consultation. Evans Law Firm, Inc. handles physical and financial elder abuse, personal injury, consumer fraud class action, banking/insurance fraud, and whistleblower/false claims litigation.