COVID-19 in Nursing Homes - Learn More.

$17,700,000

Brain injury due to nursing staff negligence

$14,000,000

Ignored x-ray results delaying diagnosis of lung cancer

$12,000,000

Failure to diagnosis causes wrongful death

$10,000,000

Truck ran over five year boy

$7,620,000

HMO doctor ignored mother's complaints resulting in death

$7,000,000

Vietnam veteran PTSD wrongful death

abuse of covid-19 relief funds

Some U.S. Nursing Home Providers Will Misuse COVID Relief Funds

A revealing story published in the Washington Post shows that many for-profit nursing homes across the U.S., received hundreds of millions of dollars in COVID relief by The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). The funds were intended to be shared to help health care workers and nursing home residents address pandemic-related shortcomings in care, but came with few spending restrictions. Unfortunately, some for-profit owners may take advantage of the support rather than spend the money on necessities such as personal protective equipment or hazard pay for nurses and aides caring for residents battling COVID-19.

According to Health and Human Services (HHS):

federal funding fraud nursing homes

Illinois Nursing Home Owner May Have Diverted Over $1 Million Intended For Nursing Homes

The Cahill Group of Chicago, an operating company working in the financial industry returned to the nursing home business in 2014 when owner and founder Mark Yampol acquired St. Louis-based Rosewood nursing homes and skilled-care centers for $250 million. Now operating as Cahill Rosewood, the group oversees 14 nursing homes in cities located throughout Illinois (and Missouri), including homes in Joliet, St. Charles, and Northbrook.

Rosewood facilities are repeatedly named on the state’s list of nursing home violators. In 2019, Rosewood homes called out for quality and care violations included:

nursing homes high risk of covid-19

Illinois Nursing Home Facilities with Ongoing Infectious Disease Shortcomings

For decades, nursing home owners and operators have cut corners and allowed their facilities to perform under minimal oversight. Legal liability serves a definite purpose and is a functional safeguard for nursing home residents who have the right to be served by an operation that complies with laws and regulations. Our attorneys are currently investigating outbreaks and reviewing over 100 complaints involving assisted living, long-term care, and skilled nursing facilities that have failed to uphold adequate procedures and responsibility related to the COVID-19 outbreak in the greater Chicago area and surrounding communities in Illinois.

Here is a summary of facilities representing only a small number of our findings.

nursing home staff ignoring dementia symptoms

Identifying Dementia Warning Signs in Nursing Home Residents

Dementia denial from caregivers is real and dangerous. And unfortunately, many nursing home owners find it easier to have staff ignore the warning signs of declining cognitive abilities rather than provide additional support. Dementia diagnoses can also be missed when overworked, and poorly resourced care teams are not trained to evaluate struggling residents who require extra supervision and management of their daily activities, medications, and financial needs. Eventually, these residents need to move to a 24-hour assisted specialized environment to keep them safe, especially as their disease progresses into later stages. Family members and friends are typically the first to request help after noticing a loved one’s behavioral changes or one or more of the concerning events listed below.

#1. Early Stage Memory Loss

meadowbrook nursing home covid-19 update

Meadowbrook Manor Reports Another COVID-19 Death, Highest Case Rate in Will County

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) reports another COVID-19 death at Meadowbrook Manor in Bolingbrook in Will County. The facility has been home to 41 deaths since the start of the pandemic, with the majority related to an outbreak in May. This is the first death noted since May 29th.

  • The facility has the highest number of deaths in Illinois among any other long-term care facility.

nursing home understaffing dire

The Chronic Problems Related to Understaffed Nursing Homes

Deliberate understaffing is a common practice in nursing homes across the U.S., and especially here in Illinois, where nearly 70% of all long-term care networks are for-profit owned. When facilities are privately owned and operated, owners become more concerned about profits than having the right amount of staff available to provide quality patient care. According to a 2018-2019 report prepared by the Department of Health and Human Services, an incredible 90% of U.S. facilities are understaffed. The findings were documented by evidence through payroll records that showed nursing homes were underreporting staffing challenges.

Worker shortages contribute to nursing home struggles that sometimes lead to preventable hospitalizations, injuries, or deaths. Risky cost-cutting measures and unethical practices are creating a ripple of adverse effects that nursing home residents ultimately pay for.

nursing home global impact covid-19

Analysis of COVID-19 Long-Term Care Deaths in 17 Countries

The Canadian Institute for Health Information performed an analysis using data collected (report as of May 25, 2020) from 17 countries to show the similarities and differences between coronavirus pandemic experiences related to long-term care. The review focused on three specific areas of comparison:

  1. COVID-19 outcomes in LTC (cases and deaths)

heat strokes at nursing homes

Nursing Homes Should Identify Signs of Heat Stroke in Residents Before It’s Too Late

Elderly nursing home residents, without the appropriate indoor cooling areas, can negatively react to high-temperature exposures and become especially at risk for heat stroke or heat stress injuries. Heat stroke is a serious condition that can cause seizures, fluid retention, brain damage, dehydration, cardiac-related events, and even death. When a nursing home is not prepared to manage residents in the heat, residents will suffer.

To identify any heat-related illness, nursing home staff should watch out for:

covid-19 supplies exhausted

Are Nursing Homes Still Short on the Supplies Needed to Fight Coronavirus?

COVID-19 cases are expected to continue climbing across the U.S. as more than 25,000 nursing home residents and 400 staff have died since the pandemic began. In the months to come, an increase in supplies are expected to be needed by health care workers, patients, and nursing home residents for their protection. But a troublesome report by Kaiser Health News (KHN) published in June 2020 shows that nearly 20% of the nation’s nursing homes still aren’t receiving the personal protection equipment (PPE) they need.

  • An estimated 3,213 out of more than 15,000 facilities had less than a week’s supply of masks, gowns, gloves, eye protectors, or hand sanitizer.

covid-19 update july 2020

FAQ: July 2020 COVID-19 Update for Illinois Nursing Home Families

As of July 10th, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has reported 23,324 laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases and 3,895 deaths among all Illinois long-term care (LTC) facilities, not just outbreaks. These numbers reflect over half of all coronavirus cases tied to long-term care facilities, including nursing homes and assisted living centers.

Because of the ill-preparedness and disastrous response to the pandemic by several nursing home owners and operators, the attorneys at Levin & Perconti have launched more than 100 investigations regarding gross negligence related to COVID-19 outbreaks in Illinois. And as part of our work as elder care advocates, we have provided answers and legal solutions to concerned family members and nursing home workers since the pandemic began.

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