Beth Dalby, an author for patch.com, details several nursing home statistics in her recent article Nursing Home Quality in America: All The States Ranked. The main focus of the article is the state by staking rankings released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). CMS releases an annual report that ranks the quality of nursing home facilities for Washington D.C. and the 50 states. Based on CMS’ five star quality ranking system Arizona received a 3.56 rating, which puts it 20th place.
A state’s rating is based on three categories: health inspections, staffing, and quality measures. Each of the three categories also have their own criteria. Health inspections relates to the number of verified complaints and deficiencies in recent facility inspections. Staffing is roughly measured by the nurses to resident ratio within the facility. The quality measures rating is further broken down into 16 different categories that address whether the facility is meeting the clinical needs of short and long term patients.
Dalby also provides statistics from a care.com that address the preferences and concerns of nursing home residents and their families. According to the care.com survey 71% of the nursing home residents surveyed were satisfied with the care they receive, while 18% are dissatisfied, and 11% are neither satisfied nor dissatisfied. The most common concerns among residents were receiving specially requested food items, more attention, and better facility/environmental accommodations. Additionally, nursing home residents overwhelming expressed a desire for more frequent visits from family members, the later of which cite work as the most substantial obstacle.
Although the statistics that Dalby reports generally cast nursing home facilities in a positive light, statistics from a Nursing Home Abuse Center tell a different story. Research from Nursing Home Abuse Center show a strong and alarming trend that the problems plaguing nursing homes are often unreported. According to Nursing Home Abuse Center only 1 out of 14 incidents of nursing home abuse is reported, and only 1 out of 25 cases of financial exploitation is reported. Furthermore, the statistics indicate 7% to 10% of nursing home residence suffered at least one instance of abuse in the past year.
Perhaps the most likely reason that instances of nursing home abuse and neglect go unreported is due to the vulnerability of nursing home residents. Many nursing home residents suffer from dementia, alzheimer’s, and similar mental ailments which greatly or entirely diminishes their ability to report instances of abuse and neglect. Short of mental ailments many residents depend on nursing home facilities and staff for their daily needs and survival, thus fear of repercussions also plays a factor. In other instances, resident’s isolation from friends, family, and other external influences greatly and or diminishes their awareness of being exploited.
Beloved family members deserve the best in their final years, thus instances of abuse and neglect are especially egregious. For over the past 25 years, attorney Kevin Garrison has represented nursing home victims and their families. Garrison Law Firm Focuses on personal injury cases and welcomes all questions either by phone or online.