ELDER ABUSE LAWS
There are several state and federal laws related to elder abuse perpetrated by staff members in nursing homes, hospitals, and long-term care facilities. O.C.G.A. § 30-5- 8 makes it illegal to abuse, neglect, or exploit an elderly person. It is also illegal for someone who is obligated to report elder abuse to fail to report that abuse. The Bill of Rights for Residents of Long-Term Care Facilities, found in O.C.G.A. § 31-8- 100 et seq., establishes requirements for companies that provide care, treatment, and services to residents of long-term care facilities in Georgia. We have earned a reputation as nursing home lawyers Atlanta GA residents come to with hard questions during hard times.
On a federal level, the Federal Nursing Home Reform Act, often referred to as OBRA ’87, outlines minimum standards of care for people living in certified nursing facilities. The nursing home rules guarantee certain rights. For example, 42 CFR § 483.10 gives residents of certified nursing facilities the right to live a dignified existence. According to 42 CFR § 483.13(c), certified nursing facilities must put protocols in place to protect residents from neglect. When a facility fails to implement required protocols, a good personal injury lawyer can step in and get justice for those who have been neglected or mistreated. Additionally, 42 CFR § 483.13(c)(2) says all instances of patient neglect must be reported to facility administrators.
False Claims Act
Under the False Claims Act, the federal government can levy steep fines against companies that knowingly submit false claims for payment or approval. Because Medicare is a government- funded program, the law applies to nursing facilities that receive Medicare funds. If an abusive staff member withholds medication from a resident, for example, the facility can’t turn around and request a Medicare payment for that medication. To do so would be fraud.