Horrible nursing home abuse and neglect was discovered at an Iowa nursing home recently during a state inspection. There was no medical director on staff, no contract with anyone to handle medical emergencies, and no registered nurse on duty. Moreover, employees had not been tested for tuberculosis, toilets were dirty and leaking, there were dead crickets, a grimy dining room, and broken washing machines. The recent inspection found more than 25 violations and called it a “total system failure.” However, one only offense (the failure to check backgrounds of employees) cost the nursing home anything in fines. Their total in fines? $100! The legislature should impose stiffer fines for such “total system failure” at a nursing home where the potential abuse and neglect is extreme.
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