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New York State found to be slow to investigate serious complaints involving nursing homes; Leitner V

A recent report issued by the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General found a significant disconnect in the investigation by New York State of significant nursing home complaints, finding that nearly 1,000 high priority complaints involving allegations of harm against New York nursing home residents in 2015 were not investigated within 10 days.

Delayed investigations can result on very serious consequences for nursing home residents, according to the report. Clearly such delays can often result in very serious health and medical conditions and injuries to New York nursing home residents. In additional, with regard to the investigation findings, delays can lead to missing witnesses, missing records, altered nursing home records, loss of evidence, etc.

Most New York nursing homes are certified to receive their payments through the federal Medicaid and Medicare departments, and are subject to federal laws regarding nursing home residents' rights. The federal agencies rely on the state health departments to investigate complaints and enforce compliance with federal and state patients' rights laws.

Complaints regarding new York nursing home residents' rights violation can include residents being left sitting in their urine and feces for hours, residents being admitted to the hospital because of preventable infections, residents being unsupervised resulting in falls and accidents, residents found with unexplained fractures, residents developing bed sores or decubitus ulcers, residents not having their diapers or adult briefs changes and developing skin breakdown, residents falling out of bed, residents not having their call bell answered by staff, short staffing, too many residents for the CNA (certified nursing assistant), residents sustaining fractures, specifically hip fractures, femur fractures, humerus fractures, tibia fractures, fibula fractures, ankle fractures, leg fractures, residents sustaining brain bleed or subdural hematoma, etc.

A copy of the United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General report can be found here.

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