Each nursing home is different than the next in terms of how patients are treated and being taken care of. Some nursing homes provide clients with excellent care following guidelines and procedures while another may be suffering a staff shortage, and employees may have to overcompensate by caring for more patients than they are able to handle resulting below quality care. A recent report from a non-profit advocacy group ranked Illinois as the 3rd worst state in the country for nursing home quality.
Families for Better Care gave Illinois an “F” for the quality of its nursing homes (Chicago Tribune). Ratings include Washington D.C. in which Illinois was ranked 49th in the country, only above North Carolina and Texas.
Nursing home residents in Illinois receive an average of only 1.6 hours of professional nursing care a day. Residents also receive roughly 2.2 hours of direct care that relates to daily needs such as going to the bathroom, help getting dressed, getting out of bed, and being turned to avoid bedsores. Nearly 97 percent of nursing homes in Illinois have had federal deficiencies or citations; moreover, 28 percent have severe federal deficiencies.
Although Medicaid is a state and federally funded insurance program, many Illinois nursing homes are challenged by low payments by it. Nationwide, Medicaid covers upwards of 60 percent of nursing home residents according to the Kaiser Family Foundation report (2017). The report states the typical cost of nursing home care is $82,000 annually. The state’s Medicaid reimbursement pay is about $35 less per resident than what the actual cost of caring for the resident is.
Illinois recently adopted a new-found budget that includes $240 million for Medicaid funding for nursing homes, $70 million which specifically is for staffing. Nursing homes that fail to meet staffing requirements will now face a financial penalty. Nursing homes that violate the requirement will have to post notices explaining themselves which is to be posted in each publicly used doorway into the facility, in the main lobby, next to the registration desk, and on their website.
Illinois law requires nursing homes to provide 3.8 hours of nursing and personal care per day for residents that need skilled care, and 2.5 hours for residents needing intermediate level care.
The top states for nursing homes are Hawaii, Delaware, and Alaska according to the Families for Better Care report. You can check out how the federal government rates individual nursing homes here. If you or a loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, please call Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd. at (312) 384-1920. Due to the statue of limitations, we will have to begin working on your case right away.