Key Points of This Article:
- An increasing elderly population has led to a larger nursing home population in Michigan of more than 34,000 residents, and with it has come more instances of nursing home negligence and abuse.
- Despite oversight by various governmental agencies, there are 5 million cases of nursing home residents who have been injured or abused each year in the U.S.
- The mistreatment of nursing home residents occurs too often, and family members can hold health care workers and organizations responsible for their loved one’s injury or death.
- Whether the abuse consists of recurrent negligence or a single incident that causes injury, the victim and family have a right to money damages.
Stay Committed to Protecting Michigan’s Nursing Home Residents
There are 5 million elder abuse cases every year in the U.S., according to the most recent data from the National Center on Elder Abuse. The staggering statistic proves that residents of senior living facilities, such as adult foster care homes, independent and assisted living centers, and nursing homes can too easily be neglected, abused, mistreated, and exploited. Family and friends can stay committed to protecting their loved one’s care by adopting a few proven methods to curb these issues.
- Make yourself known to staff each time you check-in or visit with a loved one. If you are able, please get to know who is responsible for their care.
- Request to be regularly updated about the facility’s resident council.
- Ask your loved one questions to help identify abuse and neglect each time you talk.
- Get to know the behind-the-scenes staff like the custodial team and nutrition workers.
- Attend family council gatherings when possible.
Although the pandemic has disrupted most in-facility or in-person meetings, it is likely some homes will soon be open for outdoor visits between masked family and friends and residents. In the meantime, keep those phone calls and virtual facetime chats going. Even a weekly email to the administrator during times of uncertainty may be enough to ensure the quality in the service you expect for your mother, father, sister, friend, or grandparent is being met. Developing a routine of these practices is an excellent way to identify instances of abuse or neglect whether you are visiting in-person or remotely.
Acknowledge Concerns and Work to Resolve Issues
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, about one in five incidences of elder abuse or neglect are not being reported. The events typically fall under two categories: neglect and abuse, including physical, psychological, financial, sexual, or verbal harm.
If you have concerns about neglect or abuse, cleanliness, medication use, nutrition, COVID-19, pressure wounds, falls, or reports about residents who are being mistreated by either staff or other residents, bring those issues to light immediately. Never be afraid to repeat questions or find someone else who will help answer them if you don’t receive a comforting response the first time. Remember that you may be the only one advocating for your loved one’s safety, wellbeing, and care.
List of 41 Poorly Rated Nursing Homes in Michigan
Most nursing homes are owned by organizations designed to earn a profit. These facilities are often part of larger elder care chains found in Michigan cities like Detroit, Battle Creek, Warren, Southfield, and Westland. And they typically come with single-star ratings, the lowest quality standard provided by federal and state nursing home regulators. As of September 1, 2020, 41 of the most poor performing homes in Michigan, including several identified as part of The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Special Focus Facility Program, showcased a documented history of serious quality issues or were recently cited for significant deficiencies in providing care to residents, according to CMS.
- Advantage Living Center – Redford
- Advantage Living Center – Wayne
- Arbor Manor Care Center – Spring Arbor
- Aria Nursing and Rehabilitation – Lansing
- Beaconshire Nursing Centre – Detroit
- Cambridge East Healthcare Center – Madison Heights
- Cambridge North Healthcare Center – Clawson
- Cherry Hill for Nursing and Rehabilitation – Westland
- Evangelical Home – Saline
- Greenfield Rehab and Nursing Center – Royal Oak
- Hallmark Living – Holland
- Helen Newberry Joy Hospital LTCU – Newberry
- Heritage Manor Healthcare Center – Flint
- Heritage Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation Center – Detroit
- Kith Haven – Flint
- The Lakeland Center – Southfield
- Lakeside Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation Center – Sterling Heights
- The Laurels – Coldwater
- The Laurels – Galesburg
- Life Care Center – Plainwell
- Lynwood Manor Healthcare Center – Adrian
- Marshall Nursing and Rehabilitation Community – Marshall
- Marvin & Betty Danto Family Health Care Center – West Bloomfield
- Medilodge of Campus Area – East Lansing
- Medilodge – Farmington
- Medilodge – Grand Blanc
- Medilodge – Midland
- Medilodge – Southfield
- Medilodge – Sterling Heights
- Medilodge – Taylor
- Mission Point Nursing and Physical Rehabilitation Center – Belding
- Oakridge Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation Center – Ferndale
- Pine Creek Manor Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center – Wayne
- Provincial House – Adrian
- Regency, A Villa Center – Taylor
- Schoolcraft Medical Care Facility – Manistique
- The Oaks at Northpointe Woods – Battle Creek
- The Oasis at Monroe Rehabilitation and Nursing Center – Monroe
- The Villa at Parkridge – Ypsilanti
- The Villages of Lapeer Nursing and Rehabilitation – Lapeer
- Westland, A Villa Center – Westland
Several of these owners remain in chronic violation of cutting care corners by minimizing staff-to-resident ratios and failing to provide the training, resources, and tools needed to provide the quality support residents and their families are expecting. And because substandard care is sometimes sugar-coated by high care costs, effective marketing, fancy amenities, and the appearance of a hotel-like residence, families may find it hard to suspect any form of dangerous abuse and neglect.
Recognizing the Signs of Elder Abuse and Neglect
No matter the type of skilled nursing facility or care home your loved one resides in or its rating, commit to becoming familiar with these troubling signs of mistreatment because – abuse and neglect can happen in any Michigan nursing home.
- Emotional Abuse
- Withdrawal from social activities or hobbies which they used to enjoy
- Unusual behavior, including mumbling behaviors, grinding teeth, sucking one’s thumb, or rocking behaviors
- Witnessing belittling, intimidation, harassment, controlling, or threatening behavior on the part of the caregiver
- Fear and anxiety of specific workers
- Proclivity toward self-harm such as cutting or suicidal thoughts
- New feelings of low self-esteem
- Physical Abuse
- Having unexplained broken bones, dislocations, or sprains
- Bruising, scars, or welts seen on the body
- Failing to take medications properly
- Signs of restraint, such as rope marks on the elder’s wrists or ankles
- Broken eyeglasses
- The refusal of the caregiver to allow family time with the elderly person
- Sexual Abuse
- Unexplained STDs or other genital infections
- Bruising near the genitals or around the breasts
- Stained, bloody, or torn underwear
- Vaginal or anal bleeding unrelated to a medical condition
- Leaving the elderly personal alone at risk of falling, wandering, or elopement
- Unsafe living conditions, such as a lack of heat, faulty electrical wiring, fire hazards, or lack of running water
- Chronic exposures and lack of prevention to infectious diseases
- Being unsuitably dressed for the weather
- Not bathing the person or leaving them dirty
- Living with soiled bed clothing, dirty clothes, bugs, or unsanitary conditions
- The presence of bedsores from not turning the patient regularly
- Having an unusual loss of weight or dehydration
- Financial Abuse
- Changes in financial status
- Unexplained withdrawals
- Missing money from purse, wallet, or room
- Resident unable to make regular purchases
- Personal belongings that go missing
- Unauthorized names added to a bank account
- Reluctance to discuss finances
- Request for additional funds
Seeking justice for your abused or neglected loved one is possible. In Michigan, patients are protected by a “Patient’s Bill of Rights,” found in MCL 333.20201. The Patient’s Bill of Rights provides a framework for all hospitals, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities to follow to ensure all patients are treated fairly and provided with adequate and appropriate medical treatment.
Legal Help for Michigan’s Abused and Neglected Nursing Home Residents
If you suspect nursing home abuse or neglect, our team of Michigan attorneys at the Lee Steinberg Law Firm, P.C., can help. Please contact us at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733) for a free phone consultation. With offices in Southfield, Flint, Saginaw, and Detroit we can also schedule a time for us to travel to you and safely meet. There is no fee unless we win your case.