Brain injury patients have difficulty receiving long-term care

When loved ones suffer brain injuries after car accidents, falls or incidents of violence, Illinois families might assume their loved ones will receive quality care from medical professionals while they recover.

In the United States alone, more than 4 million people suffer from disabling brain injuries and need therapy and care in specialized facilities. Since brain injuries can take months or years to heal, many patients with brain injuries are placed in nursing homes that can provide 24-hour, long-term care.

Although care may be provided 24 hours a day at nursing homes, many patients are being ignored or forgotten while they try to recover and heal from brain injuries because many facilities are not equipped to care for patients who have sustained such catastrophic injuries. This could delay the recovery process for some patients, and poor care in nursing home facilities could also result in other serious health complications.

Patients who suffer from brain injuries find it hard to receive long-term care at adequate facilities because their insurance may not cover long-term care at specialized facilities.

For example, the Medicaid program in Illinois only covers long-term care for brain-injury patients who receive treatment at licensed nursing homes. This means patients are often put in nursing homes, but many nursing homes are not designed to give brain-injury patients the specialized care they need to recover. According to a spokesman for the American Health Care Association, nursing homes sometimes don’t even want to take brain-injury patients in because they know they are not the right facility to be treating such patients.

A fraction of those suffering a brain injury do receive better care than others. For example, U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords received care at a rehabilitation facility on the payment of her federal compensation benefits and had access to numerous types of therapists. Unfortunately, for the typical American citizen, such care may not be readily available.

Source: BloombergBusinessweek, “Brain-Injured in Nursing Homes Without Care Gifford’s Had,” David Armstrong, Dec. 28, 2012

  • Our firm provides counsel to those who have been harmed by nursing home negligence and other forms of medical malpractice in Illinois. To learn more about our firm and practice, please visit our Chicago nursing home abuse lawyers page.

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Brain injury patients have difficulty receiving long-term care