Texas Nursing Homes May Face Severe Sanctions but do They Make Sense?
Sacramento, CA (Law Firm Newswire) March 17, 2015 – Nursing home abuse is nationwide. Texas may introduce a law to deal with the problem, but would it help in California?
“While Texas is looking at a bill that would revoke nursing home licenses if they have three or more serious health and safety violations, there does not appear to be any speculation as to what would happen to the residents in those shut down facilities,” points out Sacramento, Calif. nursing home abuse attorney, Deborah Barron.
Texas law mandates the reporting of any elder abuse, exploitation or neglect to the police within 24 hours. According to the latest media investigation, the state did not follow this mandate in over 1,500 cases. Aside from those shocking statistics, the three strikes proposition came about as the result of the Texas legislature’s review of the Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS).
Violations that would trigger a license revocation are those that “have caused, or are likely to cause, serious injury, harm, impairment, or death,” said Sen. Charles Schwertner. The proposed bill comes in reaction to a series of media reports revealing the state is not performing its protection of elders-in-care job properly. DADS officials appeared to be oblivious to the issue and responded indicating that once they were aware, they took action. “Precisely what action they took is open to question,” adds Barron.
Overall, the trend in Texas appears to be taking a much more serious approach to the treatment that seniors-in-care recieve. Although not all nursing home facilities are suspected of mistreating the residents, it happens often enough to sound alarm.
In response, the minority staff of the Special Investigations Division of the House Government Reform Committee (HGRC) delved into the issue. Their report revealed 30 percent of nursing homes in the United States – some 5,283 homes – received citations for almost 9,000 instances of abuse between January 1999 and January 2001.
“I’m not certain a three strikes and you are out approach makes sense when there are too few nursing homes across the nation to being with,” expresses Barron. “Shutting down homes rather than assisting them to come into compliance would be a drastic measure that could impact on the very people they want to help and protect.”
For those that suspect a relative in care is the victim of abuse, reach out and connect with an experienced and competent elder abuse attorney. Find out how tto stop abuse and whether a lawsuit is the appropriate route to follow. For further information relating to elder abuse in the United States, visit: http://www.ncea.aoa.gov/Library/Data/