On April 14, 2015, the New York Times published an article titled “In Race for Medicare Dollars, Nursing Home Care May Lag.”
The article focuses on how some nursing homes are focusing on offering short-term rehabilitation services, even though the quality of care may not be adequate.
But in a cutthroat race for Medicare dollars, nursing homes are turning to amenities like those to lure patients who are leaving a hospital and need short-term rehabilitation after an injury or illness, rather than long-term care at the end of life.
Even as nursing homes are busily investing in luxury living quarters, however, the quality of care is strikingly uneven. And it is clear that many of the homes are not up to the challenge of providing the intensive medical care that rehabilitation requires. Many are often short on nurses and aides and do not have doctors on staff.
A report released in 2014 by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the Inspector General found that 22 percent of Medicare patients who stayed in a nursing facility for 35 days or less experienced harm as a result of their medical care. An additional 11 percent suffered temporary injury. The report estimated that Medicare spent $2.8 billion on hospital treatment in 2011 because of harm experienced in nursing facilities.
Competition for these patients has become intense because Medicare, the health insurance program for older adults, pays 84 percent more for short-term patients than nursing homes typically get from Medicaid, the health insurance program for the poor, for long-term residents.
At the same time, hospitals are trying to cut costs by discharging some patients early — like those who have had hip replacement or heart surgery, for example. Not quite ready to go home, they need continuing care somewhere. And for older adults, Medicare usually pays the bill.
The article gives examples of those who have allegedly not received proper care, including incidents that have led to harm of nursing home residents, including death. Nursing home lawsuits and verdicts are also mentioned.
Additional details can be found in the New York Times article mentioned above.
Should someone you care for experience Illinois nursing home abuse or neglect or a nursing home accident – or suffer an injury at a similar health care facility such as an assisted living facility, retirement home, skilled nursing facility (SNF) or hospital – please contact the Elman Law Group at (773) 392-8182 to discuss the situation and to see if filing an injury lawsuit is warranted. This no-obligation legal consultation is free and confidential.
Elman Law Group’s Lead Attorney, Tony Elman, is a personal injury trial lawyer. Over the last 20+ years Elman Law Group has handled over 10,000 Illinois personal injury lawsuits.
During this 20+ year period, Elman Law Group has built a reputation for its courtroom trial performance, including getting large verdicts for smaller cases.
To speak directly to Tony Elman, Lead Attorney of the Elman Law Group, call (773) 392-8182 at any time. This legal consultation is free and confidential. Elman Law Group works on a “contingency” basis…Elman Law Group’s clients never pay a fee unless and until they receive monetary compensation.
Elman Law Group, LLC handles Chicago area and other Illinois personal injury lawsuits as well as wrongful death lawsuits.