CBS2Chicago.com is reporting that reformers against Illinois nursing home neglect are pushing for higher minimum staffing levels at Illinois nursing homes. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has proposed reforms that would raise minimum staffing levels at Illinois nursing home and the notion is being quietly fought by the industry, despite evidence proving that more time spent on residents’ care by nursing home nurses and nursing home aides improves the overall health of residents. The Chicago nursing home attorneys at Levin & Perconti have repeatedly stressed the importance of adequate nursing home staffing levels in order to prevent Illinois nursing home abuse. Studies have linked more nursing hours with better care, demonstrated by fewer bed sores (pressure ulcers) and less unexplained weight loss.
Today in Springfield, government talks resumed as state officials, advocates for the elderly and mentally ill, and industry leaders attempt to agree on proposed Illinois nursing home legislation. Presently, Illinois rules only require that nursing homes provide a minimum of 2.5 hours of nursing care per Illinois residents daily. CBS2Chicago reports that works out to about 31 certified nurse aides and licensed nurses per hundred residents. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn wants to phase in more nursing care. Under the Governor’s proposal, the minimum by 2014 would be 4.1 hours each day for residents who need skilled care and 2.8 hours daily for residents needing intermediate care. While some homes already meet those standards in Illinois, some do not. As a reminder, the Illinois nursing home proposals stem from news reports of assaults, rapes, and murders in Illinois nursing homes.
Click here to read more about the proposals to prevent Illinois nursing home neglect.