Families in Mississippi may be concerned about the standard of care their elderly parents and other loved ones are receiving in nursing homes. Reports of nursing home neglect and abuse can send chills up the spines of even the most dedicated family members who have thoroughly researched their elderly relatives' care providers. According to one study, residents in for-profit nursing homes are almost twice as likely to have health problems as a result of negligent or substandard care than those living in nonprofit facilities or community homes.
Reports of neglect in Mississippi nursing homes and throughout the country are increasing at an alarming rate. Investigations of these incidents typically reveal the problems to be due to understaffing, a lack of training provided to the staff or a combination of both. Far more pernicious is the rise of intentional abuse inflicted on the elderly residents by their caretakers.
Of all the forms of abuse prevalent in nursing homes, neglect is the most common one. Simply put, neglect takes place any time an individual does not get the level of care they require; for example, when a man from Mississippi in his 80s has problems feeding himself and doesn't get fed regularly by a caregiver, this is considered neglect and abuse, which is a very serious matter and needs to be handled immediately.
Nursing homes in Mississippi are generally geared to create a community atmosphere for those who live in them. They also tend to have skilled nurses and other medical professionals on staff. However, there are issues that an individual may not be aware of when entering a home or entering a family member into one. For instance, some nursing homes don't allow lawsuits and instead require arbitration.
Health care facilities in Mississippi and throughout America may benefit from a new Trump administration policy. He is rolling back fines that were levied against nursing homes that had been cited for abuse or neglect in the past. During the Obama administration, two-thirds of nursing homes that were cited for severe violations received fines. Under the new policy, homes will either not be fined or will receive smaller ones.
Many Mississippi residents have loved ones that are in nursing homes and may be shocked by the prevalence of nursing home neglect and abuse. A recent congressional report highlighted the extent of the problem, pointing to a need for major reforms.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, roughly 20 percent of the United States population will be 65 years or older by 2030. Many may need to spend at least some time in a nursing home. However, Mississippi residents and others may lose a critical protection if the federal government has its way. It intends to get rid of a ban on pre-dispute arbitration.
Nursing homes in Mississippi and the rest of the country routinely administer blood thinners, like Coumadin or Warfarin, improperly. The drugs are useful in stopping internal bleeding, but can be fatal if they are given to patients excessively or in insufficient doses.
Mississippi residents who live in nursing homes are protected by a variety of federal regulations. For instance, they have the right to see and visit with family members, service providers and government representatives, among others. They also have the right to keep their own clothing and other possessions assuming that it is safe to do so. Those who receive government benefits cannot be asked to leave a nursing home because of that fact. Medicare or Medicaid recipients may also not receive differing levels of treatment compared to those who pay out of their own funds.
Mississippi residents who have family members living in nursing homes may be interested in learning that following a revision of federal rules, their loved ones may be able to be more involved with their own healthcare. According to a director at the advocacy group Consumer Voice, the rule revisions could transform the care that nursing home residents receive.