The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services regulates nursing homes on a federal level, but each state still has its own oversight. The CMS changed its rating system in 2018. Some states believe major nursing home franchises have exploited this change to misrepresent their quality of care.
The American Association of Retired Persons reports on a California lawsuit targeting Brookdale Senior Living Solutions.
Alleged nursing home problems
Brookdale denied any wrongdoing when California attorneys filed actions against 10 of their nursing homes across the state. Allegations include:
- Discharging patients without 30-day notice
- Failure to notify state-sponsored representatives of patient discharge
- Failure to create formal discharge plans for patients
- Falsely inflating staffing hours to misrepresent a higher standard of care
The lawsuit claims Brookdale did this to prioritize Medicare patients over elders with low-income assistance like Medicaid.
Other lawsuits against Brookdale
On top of California’s lawsuits, the AARP has its own suits against Brookdale regarding a failure of elder care in Florida and North Carolina. These lawsuits allege that Brookdale failed to keep up staffing hours and care standards that they reported in marketing materials to consumers. This pushes against two injustices as a matter of false advertising to families as well as failing to provide adequate care for residents.
Justice for elders
Elderly lives matter. When nursing homes fail to deliver quality care to the frailest and most vulnerable, it falls to regulatory bodies and perceptive families to take action. Nursing homes lean on their legal representation to protect their reputation. There are resources for families to fight for the dignity of their elderly loved ones.