A report recently released shows that over 11,000 patient abuse complaints have not been investigated by the California Department of Public Health. This report was released by the California State Auditors office on October 30, 2014 and found many of these reports were labeled as “high Priority” because of the serious harm that was being done to the patients. Many of these complaints have been active for a year or longer!
This was a scathing report because it also showed that state health department also lacked a tracking system to monitor pending complaints and any policies related to addressing the backlog, auditors found. “As demand for such services increases, the quality of care provided at these facilities will continue to be an ongoing and growing concern,” the report said. “This is an absolute failure,” said Carole Herman, a consumer advocate that runs the Sacramento-based Foundation Aiding the Elderly. “These are our most vulnerable citizens and I think it’s time the governor did something. This agency is getting lots of money and not performing.”
Deb Pacyna is, a spokeswoman for the California Association of Health Facilities, a nursing home trade group actually agreed with the auditor’s findings! “It should not take any longer than 60 days to investigate and resolve a complaint. If there is an issue, our members want to know about it and fix the problem. If the department needs more money or staff to do their job, they should get those resources,” she said.
We agree that the State needs to allocate additional resources to this issue and also believe that the nursing home facilities start to take a proactive approach on this issue and put policies in place to protect the most vulnerable part of our society. Victims who have the decked stacked against them are the reason we became lawyers and why we dedicate ourselves to the defense of those people.
If you have a loved in a nursing home and you have any questions whatsoever about their care please give the Law Office of Guenard & Bozarth a call at 888-809-1075 so we can talk about this. Nursing home and elder abuse is a very serious issue and even a delay of a few days can mean the difference between life and death. For more information you can also visit http://www.gblegal.com/elder.php