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Nursing Home Neglect

Perhaps the most obvious structural reason to be concerned about nursing homes is the ability of our elder care institutions to absorb the number of seniors that will need long term care over the next few decades.  In 2050, the number of Americans aged 65 and older will be more than double the current population of 40.2 million.
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Most people recognize the growing need for the assistive care of the elderly in the United States.  Because many are reluctant to place their loved one in a true nursing home environment, the "assisted living" community has been an option many have turned to in recent years.  However, assisted living communities escape many governmental regulations that may put your loved one at great risk of danger.

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President Reagan signed The Federal Nursing Home Reform Act or OBRA '87 in 1987 which included a set of minimum standards for care and a Bill of Rights for people living in certified nursing facilities.  Among other rights, OBRA '87 gave every patient the right to be free of unnecessary and inappropriate physical and chemical restraint.  This body of laws defined the term "chemical restraint" to include "any drug that is used for discipline or convenience and not required to treat medical symptoms." 42 C.F.R. § 483.13.  Why would medications be used inappropriately in the first place?


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