Illinois family suspects negligence in nursing home transfer

The fates of Chicago nursing home residents, many of whom are mentally or physically incapable of defending against harm, are sometimes in the hands of executives who may know very little, if anything at all, about them. Nursing home neglect can rapidly deteriorate a resident’s health.

Not all long-term care facilities are managed by corporations with little regard for residents’ wellbeing. However, in some instances, profits outweigh caregiving quality.

An Illinois family is disturbed by the treatment of a loved one by a Moline nursing home. The 54-year-old Forest Hill Nursing Home resident was a patient, undergoing medication chemotherapy for cancer.

The man’s mother said she was visiting her son at the home, when staff members entered the room and announced the patient was being transferred. The mother watched as her son was “startled” from sleep, and his belongings were packed. The same day, the cancer patient was sent by van to a Galesburg facility, about 50 miles away.

The cancer patient was one of dozens of nursing home residents transferred in November to other homes because Forest Hill was shutting down. The relocations apparently took place over two weeks. Illinois officials are investigating the sudden closure.

Family members said they were not advised about the move, although Forest Hill officials insisted residents had “options” about transfers. Three days after admission to a Galesburg nursing home, the man died. The death seemed suspicious to the man’s family, who said he previously had been doing well during cancer remission.

Increasingly, hospitals and long-term care facilities are run by for-profit corporations. Like other businesses, costs in medical facilities are contained to increase profits. Unlike other companies, health care providers have a duty to safeguard the lives of patients, often frail, old or severely ill.

Family members who suspect resident neglect, injuries and wrongful deaths can consult with a liability attorney about legal action.

Source: wqad.com, “Man dies, family members want answers from nursing homes” Chris Minor, Nov. 26, 2013

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Illinois family suspects negligence in nursing home transfer