Many Florida families entrust their vulnerable loved ones to nursing homes. Residents of these care facilities are often elderly or profoundly disabled. If they suffer mistreatment or neglect, they may have limited means of communicating those problems. However, when their loved ones see evidence of abuse or neglect, they can alert the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration about their concerns. You can file a complaint anonymously, but providing your contact information will allow you to receive a report about the agency’s findings.
Provide as many details as possible
When you access the state agency’s online complaint form, be prepared to explain your concerns in detail. Investigators may have more success if you give:
- Nursing home address
- Resident’s name
- Dates and times of suspicious events
- Descriptions of injuries
To begin the process, investigators will determine whether the agency has the regulatory authority to follow up on the complaint. If it matches the agency’s authority, investigators will look into allegations of nursing home abuse or neglect. A complaint that indicates immediate danger for a resident should prompt a field office to visit the facility within two business days. If the complaint does not fall under the agency’s purview, it might forward the complaint to another agency that does have authority to investigate.
Learning the outcome of an investigation
If you gave your name when filing the complaint, the Agency for Health Care Administration will send a letter explaining what happened. If it lacked authority to investigate, the notification will tell you. Complaints that do not result in investigations will remain on file. However, if investigators could visit the facility, then you will receive a letter telling you what, if anything, the investigation uncovered.