Nursing home residents aren’t often in a position where they can speak up about what is happening to them. The sad fact about this is that there are many cases in which these vulnerable residents suffer severe pain and serious injuries just because the nursing home and its staff are trying to minimize expenses and cut costs.
There is a bill that Governor Jerry Brown can sign that would help make it much easier to handle cases of nursing home abuse and neglect. As it stands today, California law states that evidence of altered records in nursing homes must be clear and convincing if action is going to be taken.
Assembly Bill 859 would change this standard to the lesser standard of a “preponderance of evidence.” This would make it much easier for action to be taken after an incidence of altered records.
The issue of altering records at a nursing home is one that runs rampant in the industry. Some entries that are placed in records are essentially cover-ups for negligent care. For example, one patient had records in her file that noted her wound’s bandage was changed daily. That woman died after tissue grew around bandages that obviously weren’t changed as reflected in her record.
Another case involved a woman who died after she wandered out of a secured facility. She fell and had a fractured face. The nursing home’s response? Destroy written records of the events, as well as video tapes.
Problems like bedsores, malnutrition and falls are all serious matters for these residents. If you are suffering at the hands of a nursing home or have a loved one who is suffering, take action right away to stop the atrocious behavior of the staff.
Source: The Sacramento Bee, “Here’s how Jerry Brown can help protect vulnerable people, voting integrity and local control,” Sep. 28, 2017