Miami-Dade Grand Jury Calls on State to Fight Florida Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect with Tougher Penalties
A Miami-Dade grand jury says that the state is not doing enough to fight Florida nursing home negligence. The grand jury issued its report, “ALFs: a Call for Greater Interagency Communication and a Cry for More Citizen Volunteers," earlier this month after a two month-investigation that was instigated following a series of articles in the Miami Herald called Neglected to Death. The newspaper reported that even though at least 70 frail elderly seniors have died from nursing home neglect or abuse in the last decade, almost all of the assisted living facilities where the deaths occurred were allowed to stay in operation.
The grand jury’s report blames the Agency for Health Care Administration for allowing dangerous assisted living facilities to stay open and not taking more effective action to protect nursing home patients by cracking down on abusers, rogue operators, and troubled facilities. The jurors said that seeing as there has been an “explosion” in the number of ALF’s in the last five years, the state needs to do a better job of enforcement to prevent Florida nursing home abuse and neglect.
Other recommendations by the grand jury (as reported by the Miami Herald):
• Don’t let operators that provide poor nursing care while maximizing profits stay in business.
• Find all ALF administrators with questionable histories and stop them from being able to move from one Florida nursing home to another.
• Impose hefty suspensions and fines for nursing home abuse or neglect and, when necessary, revoke an ALF’s license.
• Make it a third-degree felony if a caretaker punishes a resident for complaining to inspectors
• Toughen administrators’ educational requirements, which are currently among the lowest in the US
Our Miami nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers have seen firsthand the devastating effect that mistreatment and poor nursing care can have on a patient’s health and emotional well-being. The state must do everything possible to provide consequences so that negligent ALF operators buckle down and do a better job of taking care of our sick and elderly.
If you suspect Miami nursing home negligence, you should immediately remove your loved one from the unsafe environment and report what happened. Tell the authorities and speak with a Miami-Dade County personal injury law firm.
Florida must crack down on elderly abuse MIAMI HERALD EDITORIAL | Grand jury confirms lax oversight exposed in Herald’s series, Bradenton.com, December 17, 2011
Grand jury demands Florida get tough on ALF operators, Miami Herald, December 8, 2011
Read the report (PDF)
More Blog Posts:
Miami Nursing Negligence Lawsuit Claims Paraplegic Patient Was Sodomized in His Home, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, November 16, 2011
St. Lucie County Wrongful Death Lawsuit Claims Florida Nursing Home Negligence Contributed to Woman’s Fatal Drowning, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, August 4, 2010
Broward County Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Home Care Provider Alleging Elder Financial Fraud and the Murder of 89-Year-Old Woman, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, July 1, 2010