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Understanding Nursing Home Regulations

Laws exist on both a state and federal level, and they are designed to ensure patients who live in nursing homes are protected from abuse and neglect. These laws cover a variety of different issues, including the security, health, and privacy of the patients. One of the main laws is the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987, which requires all nursing homes to maintain the highest possible care and wellbeing of every patient who is staying within the facility. The Nursing Home Reform Act has a set of regulations that every nursing home must follow, and if they do not, then they can lose funding from Medicare and Medicaid.

Additionally, the federal laws indicate that each patient and their family have the right to file a complaint if the facility has fallen down on their duty. Additionally, the law states that the resident and their family can follow through with legal action if the complaint is not addressed and handled properly.

Explaining the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987

The Nursing Home Reform Act was put in place as a part of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987. It came in the wake of serious concerns after a study shed light on the amount of nursing home abuse and neglect cases were going on. Within the act, there is the patient’s bill of rights, which covers everything that the resident has a right to when they are living in a nursing facility. These rights are designed to ensure that the patients receive proper and humane treatment while maintaining important things such as privacy.

The Basic Rights of the Resident

As mentioned above, the bill of rights covers several basic rights of the patient and they are outlined very carefully to ensure each resident receives what they need for healthy living both physically and mentally. According to the Nursing Home Reform Act, all patients should receive a comprehensive plan of care that goes over everything that will happen to them while in the facility. That plan of care should be created with the individual in mind and with input from the patient or their loved ones as well as physicians and other experts.

In addition to the right to a plan of care, each patient has a number of basic rights that is explained through this act. These include the following:

  • Basic Rights – To begin with, patients have basic rights, which include maintaining a mental and psychosocial state, maintaining their own personal property and finances, and maintaining quality of life.
  • Right to Choose – The patient has the right to be active in deciding their comprehensive care plan, including medical and living needs. The resident also has the right to not be restrained.
  • Right to Health and Safety – The act requires that all nutrition needs are met for the patient, that they receive the proper medication, and they have a clean and safe place to live. The patients have the right to have preventative care to avoid bed sores as well.

In addition to these rights set forth on a federal level, many states have their own laws as well. Each state has different regulations, so it is vital that any loved one will need to stay up to date on them. Information should be able at a local branch of the state’s health department.

Nursing home regulations are in place for a reason. They are designed to protect the rights of the patient so that they can live comfortably and with the care that they require. If nursing homes are not following these laws, then they need to be called into question through reports and even possibly lawsuits.

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