Nursing Home Residents Bill of Rights
What is the Nursing Home Residents’ Bill of Rights?
Florida Law provides that residents of nursing homes have specific legal rights that must be provided by the facility and its care takers. Violations of these rights can result in civil and criminal prosecution as nursing home abuse. It is important that you know your rights as a resident or as the family member of a resident in a nursing home.
In Florida Nursing Home Residents have the following legal rights:
- Civil and religious liberties.
- Private and uncensored communication.
- Visitation by any individual providing health, social, legal, or other services and the right to deny or withdraw consent at any time.
- Present grievances and recommend changes in policies and services free from restraint, interference, coercion, discrimination, or reprisal. Includes the right to have access to the ombudsmen and other advocacy groups.
- Organize and participate in resident groups.
- Participate in social, religious, and community activities that do not interfere with the rights of others.
- Examine results of recent facility inspections by federal and state agencies including the plan of correction if applicable.
- Manage his/her own financial affairs. A quarterly accounting will be furnished to resident or legal representative.
- Be fully informed, in writing and orally, of services available at the facility and of related charges for such services.
- Refuse medication and treatment and to know the consequences.
- Receive adequate and appropriate health care, protective and support services within established and recognized standards.
- Privacy in treatment and in caring for personal needs.
- Be informed of medical condition and proposed treatment and be allowed participation in planning.
- Be treated courteously, fairly, and with the fullest measure of dignity.
- Be free from mental and physical abuse, corporal punishment, extended involuntary seclusion, and from physical and chemical restraints except those ordered by resident’s physician.
- Be transferred or discharged only for medical reasons, the welfare of other residents or nonpayment of a bill.
- Receive a thirty (30) day written notice of discharge or relocation, and challenge such notice.
- Choose physician and pharmacy.
- Retain and use personal clothing and possessions.
- Have copies of rules and regulations of the facility.
- Notification prior to room change.
- Information concerning bed-hold policy for hospitalization.
Also, federal law prevents nursing homes from discharging (removing) or transferring (moving to another facility) a resident except for the following reasons:
- The resident’s welfare cannot be met at the facility.
- The resident’s health has improved sufficiently so the resident no longer needs the services provided by the facility.
- The health or safety of individuals is endangered.
- The resident has failed, after reasonable and appropriate notice, to pay or have paid under Medicare or Medicaid for residence at the facility.
- The facility closes.
A nursing home must give residents 30 days written notice prior to discharge or transfer.
If you believe that you or a family member has been denied any of the rights outlined above then please contact one of the experienced trial attorneys at Burnett Wilson Reeder today by simply filling out the free case evaluation form or by calling our office at 813-221-5000 for a free, no commitment consultation.