Nursing home abuse can begin as early as the hiring process. Not all states require background checks for those applying for jobs in nursing homes, and for that reason, people with criminal convictions do not have a hard time gaining employment at a nursing home or similar care facility. People with a history of assault, criminal negligence, or theft would be high risks as employees in a nursing home.
Overwhelming Frequency of Nursing Home Employees with Criminal Convictions
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, over 90 percent of nursing homes in this country hire employees with criminal convictions, a huge problem in the fight against nursing home neglect. The report looked at the employees of 260 nursing homes employed on June 9, 2009 and found that 92 percent of the facilities had hired at least one employee with a criminal conviction. In fact, nearly half of the nursing homes had 5 or more employees with criminal convictions ranging from burglary to sex offenses. Forty-three states require background checks but only 10 states require both a state and FBI background check. This is necessary to find convictions in multiple states and under different names. New Jersey and Pennsylvania only require the statewide check.
This type of disregard in the hiring process leads to the hiring of inadequate and often dangerous employees in nursing homes across the country. These are often the people that are in charge of the daily needs of one of our most vulnerable populations. Do we expect a sex offender or other convicted criminal left in charge of the care of multiple patients to handle bed sores, accidents and other safety issues properly? Nursing homes are paid a lot of money to care for your loved ones, but they often hire employees that have shown a clear disregard for the rules of society. Bed sores and pressure ulcers, accidents, and other abuses such as restraints, lack of proper nutrition, and over or under-medicating are all issues in many nursing homes. Without a proper background check into possible nursing home hires, we are allowing dangerous people to care for our loved ones.
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia
It is important that you are a frequent and attentive visitor in order to protect your loved one from neglect and abuse, especially when the nursing home is hiring convicted criminals and charging them with your loved one’s care. Lawmakers need to pass bills to make the background checks mandatory nationwide so that the vulnerable patients are protected.
If you believe your loved one has suffered neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other long term care facility, please contact the Mininno Law Office for free case evaluation or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.