7 nursing homes in Massachusetts settled with the state following an investigation that revealed serious incidents of substandard care
Most people would agree that nursing home residents deserve to be treated with a high level of care. Yet this is not always the case. Indeed, in 2019, Attorney General Maura Healey announced that seven nursing homes in the state of Massachusetts were being penalized for systemic failures that led to residents’ injuries and deaths.
Systemic Failures Lead to Harm
According to reports, investigations found that systemic failures at seven different nursing homes throughout the state of Massachusetts were responsible for the injuries and deaths of a number of different nursing home residents. While reports did not provide specifics about the failures, examples of preventable injuries and deaths that could have been prevented with a higher level of care were given. For example, in one nursing home named in the settlement, an 89-year-old resident fell 20 times, and after the 20th fall, the nurse on duty was not notified of the incident. As a result, the resident was not taken to the hospital for two days, and died from bleeding in the brain. In another case, staff failed to attempt to resuscitate a resident who became unresponsive while being fed; the death was not reported in a timely manner. According to The Boston Globe, at least one of the nursing home facilities named in the settlement is also guilty of significant financial and management problems.
7 Nursing Homes Penalized
The seven nursing homes identified faced about $500,000 total in penalties. In addition to monetary penalties, though, the nursing homes have also been subjected to strict compliance programs, will be required to undergo safety and quality care improvements, and at least one nursing home operator–Synergy Health Centers–was prohibited from operating within the state for seven years, according to an article in CBS Boston. Nursing homes named in the settlement will also face yearly audits. Part of the money obtained in the settlements will be used to pay for safety and quality of care improvements via a fund managed by the Department of Public Health; the rest of the money will be allocated to the state’s general fund.
Civil Damages for Victims of Nursing Home Abuse
For those who are victims of nursing home abuse–or the loved ones or legal representatives of victims–civil damages may be available. Victims of nursing home abuse or neglect maintain the right to bring forth a civil action against a nursing home for monetary damages, and may be able to recover both economic and noneconomic damages. Bringing forth a claim can provide monetary compensation and shed light on dangerous nursing home practices that put nursing home residents at harm.
Consult with Our Massachusetts Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today
Nursing homes have a duty to provide a high degree of care to residents. When this duty of care is breached, residents are at risk of significant injury, and nursing homes should be held liable for damages that result. To learn more about your rights following nursing home abuse or neglect, call our nursing home abuse lawyers at the office of Tetzel Law, LLC today at (617) 742-1700 for your free consultation.