Articles Posted in Illinois Nursing Homes

Improve Nursing Home Care

Nursing Homes Cited for Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation Now Highlighted with “STOP” Icon on Government Website

In response to a recommendation by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), The Centers for Medicaid & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced that it will now be easier for consumers to identify nursing homes and long-term care facilities with instances of non-compliance related to abuse. To do so, CMS is rolling out a warning icon strategy to highlight facilities that meet the following criteria:

  • Facilities cited for abuse where residents were found to be harmed (Scope/Severity of G or higher) on the most recent standard survey, or on a complaint survey within the past 12 months;

Influenza Outbreak

Flu season and seasonal outbreak of influenza and cold virus infection as a medical health care concept with a calendar background and three dimensional human disease cells.

Severe and Fatal Illnesses Caused by Influenza Outbreaks in Nursing Homes

Each year, the flu continues to be one of the deadliest illnesses in the United States, with the elderly affected most severely. More than 7.3 million flu cases in adults aged 65 years and older were tracked in 2018, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Many of these patients were also residents of nursing homes and care facilities responsible for following an influenza vaccine plan before the season begins in September and administering the vaccines throughout flu activity. Unfortunately, many nursing homes and long-term care facilities are not necessarily prepared for the program designed to also prevent a deadly flu outbreak among residents and staff.

Levin Perconti - Quality

Residents’ Rights Advocates Invite You to “Stand For Quality” This October

Across the country, residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities along with family members, ombudsmen, citizen advocates, and facility staff will honor the individual rights of long-term care residents by celebrating Residents’ Rights Month. Residents’ Rights Month is an annual event held in October by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (Consumer Voice) to celebrate and focus on awareness of dignity, respect and the value of long-term care residents.

The theme for Residents’ Rights Month 2019 is, “Stand for Quality” – to emphasize the importance of standing for quality in all aspects of residents’ experiences – quality care, quality of life, quality services, and quality choices.  The nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys at Levin & Perconti invite our community to use this opportunity to push for the rights of those they care about to be known and protected while residing in an Illinois long-term care facility.

nursing home legionnaires disease

Legionnaire’s Takes Over Covenant Living Senior Home in Batavia

On September 12, the Illinois Department of Health confirmed two additional Legionnaires’ cases involving residents of a Kane County senior living home. Since late August, Covenant Living at the Holmstad located in the community of Batavia, has been home to a cluster of 14 Legionnaires’ cases, according to the Daily Herald. Unfortunately, Legionella bacteria is dangerous and can be found in buildings with complex water systems, such as hospitals, hotels, apartment complexes and nursing homes.

“As the epidemiological and environmental investigation of this Legionnaires’ disease cluster continues, it is important to release this information to ensure that nearby residents are aware and seek treatment if they become symptomatic,” Ngozi Ezike, MD, director of the Illinois Department of Public Health, told local news.

elderly financial exploitation

Chicago Nursing Home Administrators Fined for Refusing to Help Dementia Patient Robbed by Their Employees

Levin & Perconti attorneys Steven Levin and Mike Bonamarte have been working with Cook County Public Guardian Charles Golbert for nearly a year in representing an elderly woman who had her life savings robbed and justice has still not been served. Grace Watanabe is a 98-year-old nursing home resident with dementia who had $750,000 stolen by her care staff while residing at Symphony of Lincoln Park. Now, a judge has imposed a $400-a-day fine on Symphony executives for their refusal to share any information about the alleged theft.

Any type of stealing or misappropriation of a resident’s money is not only immoral; it typically creates a trail of criminal behavior involving additional acts of financial exploitation. The lack of cooperation and extreme difficultness presented by these administrators sends validation to other nursing homes that it is normal to steal from vulnerable residents. And it could go as far to leave many people wondering if these executives would rather wait in silence for Watanabe to no longer be able to pursue her case than to speak up and take responsibility for not preventing the theft in the first place.

Arbitration Agreement

FAIR Act Bill Has Passed the House, Now Headed to the Senate

On Friday, September 20, lawmakers in the House voted 225-186 to pass the Forced Arbitration Injustice Repeal (FAIR) Act, introduced by Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), with the help of many supporters who look to hold long-term care doers responsible for abuse and neglect. The bill is designed to end forced pre-dispute arbitration in contracts between consumers and corporations, including nursing homes, long-term care centers and assisted living communities.

Moving ahead, the FAIR Act could:

nursing home patients

Your Hospital-Acquired Infection May Have Been Prevented

Medical errors can lead to fatal infections and are now the third leading cause of death in the US. Johns Hopkins patient safety experts say these mistakes are responsible for more than 250,000 deaths per year and nearly 70 percent of the 1.7 million preventable hospital-acquired infections accounted for.

Hospital-acquired infections can be caused by viral, bacterial, and fungal pathogens. The most common types are central-line associated infections, pneumonia, urinary tract infection (UTI), Clostridium Difficile (C. diff) infections, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), invasive Candidiasis, Septicemia, and surgical site infections (SSI).

nursing home neglect

Nursing Home’s Failed Disaster Response Resulted in 12 Resident Deaths 

Four former employees at the Florida nursing home plagued with power outages from Hurricane Irma will be held responsible for the 12 residents who died from heat-related injuries and illnesses in 2017. The deceased were all residents at Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills and ranged in age 57 to 99.

The employees, of which three were nurses and one a facility administrator, failed to do their basic duty to protect life and never dialed 911 for evacuation help. The company responsible for restoring power to the home released a statement that “those customers who have electricity dependent medical needs should call 911 if they are without power and in a life-threatening situation.”

nursing home vote

Lawmakers Will Soon Vote on the FAIR Act to Stop Forced Arbitration 

Americans have the right of a jury trial unless forced to agree otherwise in the form of an arbitrary clause contractually. These agreements have found their way into all of our employment, consumer, franchise and even medical contracts. Once used as a tool for businesses to solve their disputes, forced arbitration has become a greedy and ruthless tactic, dangerous to consumers.

Just this week, the full House of Representatives is set to vote on the FAIR Act, H.R. 1423. The bipartisan bill, sponsored by Congressman Hank Johnson (D-GA), is vital to all American consumers as no one should be forced to agree pre-dispute to allow third-party arbitrators decide on a judgment rightfully meant for a public trial. The bill has 222 cosponsors including several Representatives from Illinois.

Arbitration Agreement

Forced and Often Rigged, Arbitration Only Helps Companies

Some companies practice forced arbitration by removing its consumers and workers right to file a claim in a public court through formal, signed agreements. As defined by the American Bar Association, arbitration is “a private process where disputing parties agree that one or several individuals can make a decision about the dispute after receiving evidence and hearing arguments.” Similar to what happens in a trial, those involved will present their case along with evidence to the arbitrator. But parties may not have to follow state or federal rules of evidence. Likewise, the arbitrator is not always required to apply the governing law.

Millions are subject to the binding process, according to a new report by the American Association for Justice (AAJ). Truth About Forced Arbitration, calls the process an immunity and effort to allow companies to continue breaking the law. The AAJ collected five years of data on consumer and employment forced arbitrations reported by the nation’s two largest arbitration providers, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) and Jams and concluded these findings.

Lawyer Monthly - Legal Awards Winner
The National Trial Lawyers
Elder Care Matters Alliance
American Association for Justice
Fellow Litigation Counsel of America
Super Lawyers