Lawyers in our firm get lots of calls from concerned family members who have questions about how to choose the right nursing home for a loved one. This is an extremely tough decision, and it often has to be made on short notice. We have previously mentioned the website www.medicare.gov/NHCOMPARE. This is an excellent tool to find and compare nursing homes across the country. The website contains the newly implemented Five-Star Quality Rating System for nursing homes. The Five-Star System provides nursing home ratings based upon three sources:
The system then provides a star rating for each category and a combined score in the form of an overall rating. The website is also extremely helpful in that you can identify nursing homes by state, county, or city. You can research the Five-Star Quality Rating for all nursing homes in a particular geographic area.
Once a person has those ratings, they can conduct their own in-person inspection of the nursing home. One can actually print out a “Nursing Home Checklist” which provides information about what to look for and what questions to ask when visiting a prospective nursing home. Along with this information, persons seeking a good, safe nursing home should be able to make an informed decision about the level of care offered by a facility.
JP Sawyer, one of the lawyers in our firm’s Personal Injury/Product Liability Section, handles nursing home litigation for our firm. I, along with other lawyers from the section, work with JP on these cases. Over the past several years, we have seen some real horror stories involving the care of nursing home residents. We believe strongly that nursing homes should be held accountable when a resident is either mistreated or receives substandard care and treatment. If you want additional information on this subject, you can contact JP Sawyer at 800-898-2034 or by email at JP.Sawyer@beasleyallen.com.
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