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Do nursing shortages cause increased liability at South Carolina nursing homes?

South Carolina – January 24, 2022

South Carolina nursing homes must follow federal and state laws regarding the resident bill of rights identified in The Nursing Home Reform Act under Title IV: of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987.  Regulation ensures residents are receiving a proper level of care while living in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Nursing home abuse attorneys assist individuals and family members who suspect abuse and harm against loved ones living in long term skilled facilities which can occur if there is a staffing shortage.

Budget addresses nursing shortage.

Governor Henry McMaster recently announced the FY 2022-2023 Executive Budget which addresses the national and state data identifying factors causing the shortage of nurses: inadequate funds to hire and pay faculty who are preparing our nurses needed now and in the future.. Non-competitive salaries for nurse educators lead to shortages at all levels. Shortages of faculty result in fewer nursing classes, fewer supervised clinical rotations in field work, and fewer qualified students earning their degrees.  The current budget recommends $20 million in lottery revenues to begin addressing the nursing shortage. These one-time funds will be used at our public colleges and universities, including technical colleges, for the following initiatives. First, $10 million would be used to supplement the salaries of existing full-time faculty and the hourly rates of part-time faculty, or the salaries of clinical nursing faculty. The funds will be allocated based on the number of students enrolled in nursing programs. The remaining funds will provide tuition reimbursement or scholarships for students enrolled in graduate-level nurse educator programs, Doctor of Nursing Practice programs, or PhD programs.

Federal nursing home laws state that residents are entitled to receive:

  • Medically-related social services,
  • Proper health care and dental care,
  • Accurate dispensing, receipt, and administration of medicines,
  • Dietary services that meet daily nutritional needs,
  • Services for mentally ill and special needs residents,
  • Personal, material, and financial privacy when requested,
  • Treatment that does not violate a resident’s personal dignity.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid provides an icon that reveals nursing homes with reported violations of care on the agency’s Nursing Home Compare website.

Responsibility.

A nursing home facility can be held liable for any personal injury, or neglect causing harm to a resident, or patient in their care.  This negligence may have occurred by their part through:

  • negligent hiring,
  • understaffing,
  • breach of regulatory obligations to guidelines,
  • insufficient employee training, or
  • errors in treatment, or medication dispensing.

A nursing home abuse attorney can give concerned individuals some guidance on legal action against abuse, or neglect.

Accountability.

Liability is the state of being responsible for something and vicariously liability is a legal doctrine assigning liability for the injury to a person, even if they did not cause the injury directly, but had a legal relationship with another who directly caused injury, or harm.  A nursing home employer can be held responsible for the negligent, or abusive acts of its employees, or contracted workers, during the course of their work and through the scope of their job duties. Contracted parties, through their contracted scope of work with a nursing home, may share the liability for any neglect, abuse, or injury to a resident.  Experienced South Carolina lawyers can initiate legal action against abuse, or neglect, or communicate with insurance adjusters toward amicable settlements.Seek legal counsel.

 Seek legal counsel.

When sub-standard care caused by a nursing shortage results in harm to a resident, or outright abuse occurs, legal action may be taken against a nursing home and/or the treating medical professional because acts of negligence that cause, or exacerbate existing health conditions, or place residents in danger are deviations from NHRA  rights.  Call an experienced attorney at the McDougall Law Offices, to discuss parties who will be named in a nursing home abuse lawsuit in South Carolina.

McDougall Law Firm, LLC

115 Lady’s Island Commons
Beaufort, SC 29907

Phone: 843.379.7000

Sources.

Gov. Henry McMaster Announces Fiscal Year 2022-2023 Executive Budget, ARPA Recommendations | S.C. Governor Henry McMaster

https://www.congress.gov/bill/100th-congress/house-bill/3545/titles

https://www.medicare.gov/nursinghomecompare/About/howcannhchelp.html

https://www.medicare.gov/nursinghomecompare/search.html

 

 

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