After a devastating track record in Illinois nursing homes, a legislative panel is expected to approve nursing home safety rules. “Illinois nursing homes ranked 50th in the nation for direct care nursing hours per resident per day and were the second worst in the nation for long-stay residents receiving inappropriate use of antipsychotic medication, according to a 2018 AARP report.” COVID-19 only further worsened these conditions, hitting record highs of deaths and infections among residents.
Illinois passed the Nursing Home Quality of Care Initiative last year, in order to make “nursing homes safer, enforce staffing guidelines, heighten transparency of nursing home violations and enhance safeguards for use of harm antipsychotic drugs.” This week, lawmakers will be asked to approve rules created by the Illinois Department of Public Health in line with the initiative from last year. These rules will “ensure nursing home residents the safety and accountability they deserve,” requiring education of staff, strong remedies for violations, and public information.
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