As an experienced medical malpractice lawyer in Georgia, I am often asked to recommend a good nursing home. While I am reluctant to give specific recommendations, I do understand how important this decision is and offer some helpful advice here. First, the Georgia Department of Community Health maintains records on nursing and assisted living homes/facilities. Second, Georgia nursing homes are governed by O.C.G.A. 31-8-130. Finally, and most important by far, get as many references as you can from each facility and actually follow-up with the references.
Considering the horrific accounts of neglect, abuse and mistreatment that are reported about many Georgia nursing homes, mental institutions and treatment facilities, the above steps are important. Not only is there not enough staff to care for the residents, many times the staff members that are on duty do not possess the training and skills to properly carry out their duties. This leads to inattentiveness, mistakes and, ultimately, inadequate care.
A good checklist of important factors to consider when looking into nursing home choices is published by medicare.Is the nursing home Medicare certified? Some, but certainly not all important considerations are:
Is the nursing home Medicaid certified?
Does the nursing home have the level of care I need?
Does the nursing home offer specialized services, like a special care unit for a resident with dementia, ventilator care, or rehabilitation services?
Is the nursing home located close enough for friends and family to visit?
Are the residents clean, well-groomed, and appropriately dressed for the season or time of day?
Is the nursing home free from overwhelming unpleasant odors?
Does the nursing home appear clean and well-kept?
Is the temperature in the nursing home comfortable for residents?
Does the nursing home have good lighting?
Are the noise levels in the dining room and other common areas comfortable?
Is smoking allowed? If so, is it restricted to certain areas of the nursing home?
Does the relationship between the staff and residents appear to be warm, polite, and respectful?
Does the nursing home check to make sure they don’t hire staff members who have been found guilty of abuse, neglect or mistreatment of residents; or have a finding of abuse, neglect, or mistreatment of residents in the state nurse aid registry?
Is there a licensed nursing staff 24 hours a day, including a Registered Nurse (RN) present at least 8 hours per day, 7 days a week?
Do residents get preventive care, like a yearly flu shot, to help keep them healthy? Does the facility help arrange hearing screenings or vision tests?
How often are charts reviewed by a doctor?
Attorney Robert J. Fleming has been handling wrongful death cases, nursing home abuse, car accident cases and construction site injury cases for individuals and families who have been harmed, injured or died as a result of the carelessness or negligence of another for more than 20 years in and around Atlanta, Georgia and its surrounding areas, including Alpharetta, Austell, Avondale Estates, Chamblee, College Park, Conyers, Duluth, Decatur, Doraville, Hapeville, Johns Creek, Jonesboro, Lawrenceville, Norcross, Peachtree City, Riverdale, Roswell, Sandy Springs, Stone Mountain, and Smyrna. If you have been seriously injured in a car accident and would like quality legal representation, contact Robert J. Fleming directly on (404) 525-5150 or contact us online.