The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society recently published a study by researchers at Brown University. The study found that older adults often feel rushed and unprepared when they must choose a skilled nursing facility following a hospitalization. The experience overall was generally negative; doctors and health-care providers offered little guidance or education, discharge planners at hospitals merely provide names and addresses of potential facilities, and the patients often were rushed through the process of choosing a facility. Since unexpected emergencies led to hospitalization most of the time, quick decisions about facilities were often necessary. In most cases, patients made their choice of facilities either the day before or the day of their discharge from the hospital. When combined with a total lack of information about their options, patients often chose facilities based on location rather than quality.
The study suggests that health care workers, and hospital discharge planners, in particular, familiarize themselves with available facility options so that they can better guide patients and their families to a facility that will meet their needs and desired quality of care. Ensuring that workers are familiar with these facilities could lead to patients having a more positive overall admission experience. According to the study results, the combination of an emergency hospitalization and a short period in which to make decisions about nursing homes created a mostly unfavorable experience overall.
Deciding between different long-term care facilities can be a difficult and time-consuming decision. Above all, you really want your loved one to be safe and well-cared for, no matter what option you choose. At Boller & Vaughan, our nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers want to help protect those who can protect themselves the least. This is why we focus our efforts on protecting these individuals in long-term care facilities such as nursing homes. We are skilled at investigating your case and assessing your situation in order to decide whether you have any potential legal claims against the facility that took the neglectful and abusive actions toward your loved one. Don’t hesitate to contact Boller & Vaughan right away and find out how our legal skills can help your family through this difficult situation.