Nursing Home Compare Website Starts “Abuse” Icon for Website Search Page: St. Louis, MO Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Shares What it Means
One of the most thorough and important ways to start a nursing home search is on the trusted Medicare.gov website through the Nursing Home Compare search. Our St. Louis nursing home abuse lawyer recommends use of this government website search to help residents and consumers find and compare nursing homes certified by Medicare and Medicaid. The website provides information on resident care, staffing, and other important information regarding placing a loved one in a facility. And now for the first time, this important Nursing Home Compare website has added an “Abuse” icon to warn searchers about potential problems at nursing homes.
What is the “Abuse” Icon Being Used?
The very mission statement on the Nursing Home Compare website is that “[e]very nursing home resident deserves to retain their basic human dignity and to be treated with respect at all times.” Our Missouri nursing home abuse lawyer agrees with the Nursing Home Compare website that, “[a]buse and neglect are never acceptable” and residents with their families deserve competent, professional, and important care. Medicare, Medicaid, and the Nursing Home Compare website and now taking a strong step forward to promote this policy.
The federal government, through Nursing Home Compare is now implementing an “Abuse” icon next to nursing homes that come up on a search. This icon is a an open-palmed “stop” icon in a red circle.. This “Abuse” icon indicates to searchers that the facility has been “cited for potential issues related to abuse.”
While there is not a detailed definition of what this means, any consumer should be aware of any nursing home that has recently suffered instances of abuse or neglect, such as:
- Physical abuse;
- Sexual abuse;
- Financial abuse;
- Emotional abuse or psychological harm;
- Neglect of residents;
- Intentionally causing harm to residents;
- Negligent care and treatment; and
- Many other causes.
What Does it Really Mean When a Nursing Home Has an “Abuse” Icon on it?
An “Abuse” icon next to a nursing home in a Nursing Home Compare search means that the facility has a warning that abuse or potential abuse occurred at this facility. However, it is important to realize that the warning sign may still only mean “potential issues related to abuse”.. This means that residents and their families will still have to do their homework to ensure that a facility is competent to handle the needs they or their loved one have. Thus, the government website is encouraging all residents and their families who search the Nursing Home Compare website and see an Abuse icon to stop and take a long look at why the facility earned that icon.
Does this mean that you can never use an icon with an Abuse icon or SFF icon? No, but you should take a serious look at the reasons behind why the government determined that those nursing homes deserved the “Abuse” icon.
The Nursing Home Industry Reaction
Predictably, the nursing home industry is reacting negatively to the new “Abuse” icon. Some have branded the icon as a “Scarlet Letter” and an “unnecessarily dramatic sideshow”. In the years the Terry Law Firm has been handling cases of nursing home abuse and neglect across Missouri, we have learned that the nursing home industry does not want anyone to peek behind the curtain at what is really happening at many nursing homes around the state. The Abuse Icon does just that…it gives potential residents and family members a reason to dig a little deeper rather than just accept the glowing tributes the nursing homes give themselves during family tours.
How Many Missouri Nursing Homes Received the “Abuse” Icon?
A total of 18 Missouri nursing homes received the “Abuse” icon on Nursing Home Compare. Stay tuned to our blog as we will provide more details about each facility in the coming days, but here is a list of all Missouri nursing homes that received the “Abuse” icon:
- Aurora Nursing Center – Aurora, MO
- Big River Nursing & Rehab – Cedar Hill, MO
- Clara Manor Nursing Home – Kansas City, MO
- Community Manor – Farmington, MO
- Community Springs Healthcare Facility – El Dorado Springs, MO
- Country View Nursing Facility, Inc. – Bowling Green, MO
- Delmar Gardens West – Town & Country, MO
- Eldon Nursing & Rehab – Eldon, MO
- Four Seasons Living Center – Sedalia, MO
- Fulton Nursing & Rehab – Fulton, MO
- Garden Valley Healthcare Center – Kansas City, MO
- Garden View Care Center – O’Fallon, MO
- Highland Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center – Kansas City, MO
- Levering Regional Health Care Center – Hannibal, MO
- Riverview Nursing Center – Mokane, MO
- Rolla Health & Rehabilitation Suites – Rolla, MO
- St. Andrews at Francis Place – Eureka, MO
- St. Joe Manor – Bonne Terre, MO
If you are considering one of these facilities or you currently have family members in one of these nursing homes, it would not be inappropriate for you to ask hard questions to the management and even the ownership about the circumstances surrounding the decision made by the government and what they are going to do to protect the residents who live there.
How to Research Nursing Home Facilities
Besides using the Nursing Home Compare website and other common means of checking ratings like online reviews, searching for federal surveys is an important way to ensure that your rights or your loved one’s rights are protected. With survey reports you can review what the violations are and read detailed explanations of what happened in the investigation, what remedial action the facility had to take, and how the resident’s care was impacted. If you use the Nursing Home Compare feature and see an Abuse icon, check for surveys to determine what errors, mistakes, and potential abuse or neglect problems that a nursing home was investigated..
Another important means of researching nursing home facilities are through lawyers. Check lawyer websites and blogs, like ours, for information about facilities that may be in the news or had lawsuits against them. Also visiting lawyer blogs is important because they often provide information on warning signs at facilities, including looking for signs of nursing home physical abuse or financial abuse. Ask our St. Louis nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer at the Terry Law Firm to investigate and determine whether you have rights to protect after nursing home injuries. Whether you are the injured resident or a loved one who is concerned, call our office for a FREE consultation by dialing (314) 878-9797 to learn how we can help today.