NY Criticized for Placing Recovering COVID Patients in Nursing Homes

New York State has received substantial criticism for a controversial decision to move recovering coronavirus patients to nursing homes as a means of alleviating pressure on hospitals. According to the Associated Press, more than 4,500 patients recovering from COVID-19 were moved into nursing homes in New York State, due to a policy that has since been reversed by Governor Cuomo. The tally is a mere estimate however, as the New York State Department of Health has yet to release its own numbers.

The coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, is a highly infectious disease that has wreaked havoc on healthcare … Read the rest

State Legislators Call for Investigation of Nursing Home COVID Spread

New York has been hit harder by the coronavirus than any other state in America, with New York accounting for nearly a quarter of all coronavirus infections and deaths in the country. Nursing homes have been particularly badly hit, with a third of all coronavirus deaths across the United States occurring among nursing home residents and staff. Now, state legislators are calling for an investigation to find out why the virus has been so particularly devastating in nursing homes.… Read the rest

Immunity Law Shields NY Nursing Homes from Liability

At a time when the coronavirus is spreading throughout nursing homes and their residents are placed at high risk of infection, common sense would dictate it is more important than ever to hold nursing homes accountable for negligence. However, due to an executive order by Governor Cuomo and a provision in the recently passed budget bill granting immunity from coronavirus-related liability, it may be harder than ever to hold them liable for their negligence. This may come as a shock to anyone looking to sue a nursing home when their loved ones become ill.… Read the rest

Most Nursing Homes with Coronavirus Have History of Infections

In an analysis published by the Los Angeles Times, it was found that 89% of all nursing homes that have had coronavirus outbreaks in Los Angeles County had previously been cited for failing to observe anti-infection protocols. While not a surprising result, it is unfortunate for residents who are now infected and fighting for their lives against COVID-19. It also highlights the importance of infection control regulations in fighting outbreaks like the coronavirus.… Read the rest

DOJ Targets Skilled Nursing Facilities for FCA Violations

Every year, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) announces its priorities, in part to inform the public about its activities, but also to put potential wrongdoers on notice that they will be under extra scrutiny. The announcement also is intended to make otherwise recalcitrant people comply with the law, which both protects the public and reduces the likelihood of getting targeted in an investigation. This year, among its other priorities, the DOJ has announced it will be focusing on violations of the False Claims Act (FCA) by skilled nursing facilities.… Read the rest

Coronavirus Spread Highlights Importance of Good Hygiene

With cases of coronavirus now appearing in the United States, there are increasing worries about the impact that the disease will have, particularly on children, the elderly and those with chronic medical conditions. While authorities are urging people not to panic, many Americans are concerned about the danger the coronavirus poses. The coronavirus highlights the importance of having medical institutions that follow proper protocol when it comes to maintaining good hygiene by their staff.… Read the rest

Nearly Three Quarters of Nursing Homes Are Understaffed

A recent study in the Journal of Health Affairs has estimated that as much as 75% of all nursing homes are significantly understaffed. The study compared the number of registered nurses (RNs), licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and nurse aides to the staffing requirements set forth by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). What they found was that many nursing homes fell well below CMS requirements, often inflating their staffing numbers in government reports to save on their operational costs.… Read the rest

Study Find Sepsis to Be Leading Cause of Death in Hospitals

According to a new study in the medical journal The Lancet, sepsis is the leading cause of death in hospitals in the United States, and also one of the leading causes of death worldwide. By their estimates, a full fifth of all deaths in 2017 were related to sepsis, with incidence rates being particularly high in sub-Saharan Africa, Oceania, and south, east and southeast Asia. Although the overall rate of sepsis has fallen in the United States, it remains the single largest health risk patients face in hospitals.… Read the rest

Pain and Suffering Claims Reinstated in Nursing Home Malpractice Case

The First Circuit Court of Appeals has reinstated a plaintiff’s pre-mortem pain and suffering claim that was initially dismissed by the district court. The claim is part of a 2014 case involving a woman who had been transferred to a New York City nursing home after hospitalization for severe respiratory distress and pneumonia, where she eventually died of cardiac arrest due to severe septic shock. The claim is dependent on evidence of the decedent’s mental state prior to her death.… Read the rest

Doctor Pleads Guilty to Illegal Distribution of Opioids Resulting in Overdose

A doctor in Manhattan pleaded guilty early in December to illegally distributing fentanyl and oxycodone to patients who did not medically require it. As a result, at least one of his patients is dead from an overdose, having been prescribed hundreds of times the amount of oxycodone generally prescribed for medical purposes. The doctor, who worked for a major Manhattan hospital, will be sentenced in March, and faces a maximum of twenty years in prison.

Opioid addiction has become an increasingly common problem throughout the United States, with many who become addicted dying from an overdose. While this spread of … Read the rest