The Chicago Tribune reported this week on a new agreement that may have long-lasting implications for some developmentally disabled Illinoisans working to move out of nursing homes.
The agreement was reached between state officials and disability rights activists who sought changes in the way certain disabled nursing home members were treated. The group filed a class action lawsuit against the state in 2005 claiming that the state care of these individuals was lacking. The basis of the charge was the then inability of residents to live in an integrated living environment. The claim was rooted in the American with Disabilities Act and its rejection of undue segregation.
An agreement was recently reached between the parties in that original suit. If approved by a judge, the decree will allow much greater flexibility of living conditions for developmentally disabled residents. According to the agreement, all 6,000 residents of these special facilities are able to move out of the nursing home and into a small group home.
The agreement remains flexible in that only those individuals who chose to leave the larger facilities are able-instead of forcing all in the group to move to smaller group homes.
Our Chicago nursing home lawyers at Levin & Perconti understand the importance of remaining flexible about the care required by different residents at our nursing homes. Allowing more options for certain resident who chose it will only have a beneficial impact on their health and well-being. It is vital that nursing homes take into account the overall quality of life of many of their residents, beyond the mere basics of care. All nursing home residents are community members who deserve the same chance at happiness as everyone else.
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