Choosing to move the family members that we love into a nursing home isn’t an easy decision. The choice might result in feelings of guilt and failure towards our loved ones.
Unfortunately, the average person cannot afford a private nurse or to quit their job to take care of a parent, grandparent, aunt, or uncle.
We worry about placing them in nursing homes because of reports of abuse and neglect.
If you have placed a family member in a nursing care facility in Ohio, remaining involved in their daily life and care can help reduce the chances of abuse or neglect.
Knowing what rights your family member has while living in a nursing home helps you to more closely monitor the living situation and take action if need be.
Rights of Nursing Home Residents in Ohio
Title 37, Chapter 3721 of Ohio Revised Code states the legal rights granted to nursing home residents residing in Ohio. They include:
- The right to a safe and clean living environment
- Right to be free from all types of abuse and to be treated with respect and dignity, including freedom from financial exploitation
- The right to medical treatment, nursing care, and other care without regard for race, color, religion, nationality, age, or source of payment
- A right to prompt responses to reasonable requests
- The right to clean/changed clothes and bed sheets, ensuring comfort and sanitation; the right to use personal clothing and possessions
- A right to see a doctor of their choice
- Right to participate in decisions that affect the resident’s life, including the participation in one’s own treatment or care plan
- The right to withhold payment for a doctor visit, if the doctor did not show up
- Right to confidentiality concerning personal information and medical records
- The right to privacy during a medical examination, treatment, and personal care; right to have room doors closed and require knocking to enter
- Right to refuse participation in research studies
- A right to be free from physical restraints, chemical restraints, and prolonged isolation; minimum usage is permitted to prevent damage and injuries but must be for a limited period of time and documented by a physician
- The right to choose a pharmacist and receive supplies
- Right to exercise all civil rights
- The right to have access to educational, vocational, social, and recreational programs
- Right to observe religious rites and participate in religious, cultural, and social groups
- The right to private and unrestricted communication with others including snail mail, telephone calls, and private visits
- Right to share a room in the facility with a spouse, or guaranteed privacy for spousal visits
- Right to notice of a room or roommate change with an explanation
- The right to voice grievances and suggest policy changes to staff, employees, and other relevant parties; right to access a residents’ rights advocate and to participate in nursing home resident advocacy groups and organizations.
What Should You Do If You Suspect a Rights Violation?
Keep in mind that the violation of some of the aforementioned rights might result in criminal charges. If you suspect that your loved one is being abused or neglected, you need to file a report with the Ohio Attorney General.
You can also file a complaint with the Ohio Department of Health.
For other rights violations, your first course of action is to contact the nursing home administration and notify them in writing of the issue(s). Hopefully, the administration will take your concerns seriously and adequately address them in a timely manner.
We Advocate for Your Loved Ones
When your loved one’s rights have been violated while living in an Ohio nursing home, you need to fight for them. Contact an Ohio nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible. In some cases, you or your loved one might be eligible for compensation.
The compassionate and knowledgeable legal team at Dworken & Bernstein is here to advocate for your loved one. Contact us today for a free consultation to discuss your family member’s struggles while living in a nursing home.
The information presented in this post is not legal advice and does not form a lawyer/client relationship. Laws and circumstances can differ and change.
Please contact us for a personal review of your situation