Although it may seem unbelievable that nursing home abuse and neglect still happens, it’s all too real for many Kentucky nursing home residents. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), our state ranks 48th in the entire nation for nursing home care quality – an unacceptable statistic.
At Hare Wynn, our Kentucky nursing home abuse lawyers believe that every senior deserves to be treated with respect, and to live with dignity. When a nursing home fails to meet the high standard of care required for the elderly, residents can suffer from a range of serious, life-threatening conditions and injuries. If that happens to your family, our team can provide the aggressive legal advocacy you need.
How Does the CMS Report Rank Nursing Homes?
Medicare officials regularly rank all 15,600 of the nation’s nursing homes, awarding up to 5 stars for overall care quality. By examining more than 16 different metrics – including staffing ratios, number of nursing home deficiencies, and frequency of health inspections – the CMS generates an average star rating for each nursing home, and then provides an overall rating for each state. Hawaii was the front-runner at an average of 3.93, whereas Texas was named #51 at an average 2.68 rating. As the 48th state, Kentucky’s comprehensive score fell at 2.98.
Although there are some signs that Kentucky’s nursing homes are finally improving, the latest CMS report indicates that we still have a long way to go. As nursing home abuse lawyers based in Kentucky, we’re committed to holding the worst offenders accountable, with the ultimate goal of improving nursing home care quality for all seniors.
A Troubling Trend: Low Nursing Home Staffing Levels
There are many possible causes for substandard nursing home care, but low staffing ratios represent the most troubling trend in Kentucky and other states. In one groundbreaking study released by Kaiser Health News last year, officials discovered that 7 in 10 nursing homes had been systematically over-reporting their staffing levels to Medicare. Because elderly patients may require a high degree of attention from medical professionals, low staffing levels can have a dramatic impact on their quality of life, and lead to increased neglect.
Under the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987, each nursing home is legally required to provide 24-hour access to licensed nursing service, and it must be sufficient to meet the needs of all residents. They are also expected to have a registered professional nurse on duty, for a minimum of 8 consecutive hours each day. Because of this federal legislation and other state laws, nursing homes can and should be held liable for failing to properly monitor residents.
More than 125 Years of Compassionate Counsel
At Hare Wynnwe have many years of experience handling complex nursing home cases, and we understand how painful it can be when your loved one shows signs of neglect or abuse. Ranging from easily preventable bedsores to physical abuse from staff, seniors should never have to experience abuse because of a nursing home’s negligence.
That’s why we’re committed to fighting back, and representing families whose loved ones have suffered in silence for too long. If you believe there is clear evidence of negligence in your nursing home case, we can perform a full investigation, and hold the right party accountable for your losses.
Call us today at 800-568-5330 for a free consultation with our skilled legal team.
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