State Proposes Bill to Protect Nursing Home Residents

Legislation introduced in one state this week would provide disabled children in nursing homes with a variety of new protections. The proposal includes stiffer penalties for poor care and tougher rules on when families must be notified of violations.

The reform package, sparked by a Chicago Tribune investigative series last year, also calls for tighter restrictions on the use of psychotropic medications, bans on new admissions at troubled facilities and more oversight when deaths occur. In response to the Tribune series, Gov. Pat Quinn instructed his senior health policy adviser to draft legislation to protect the developmentally disabled across the state.

Advocates for nursing home residents and the developmentally disabled offered input in a series of sometimes contentious meetings, and the final legislation was added on to an existing nursing home bill. Advocates of nursing home residents generally praise the legislation but they think it does not quite go far enough. For more, read the story.

Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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