A number of different recent reports have pinpointed Texas nursing homes as dangerous locations rampant with negligence and abuse against residents. This is particularly important in light of a number of different lawsuits filed directly against nursing homes within the Lone Star State.
A new Texas nursing home abuse settlement has led to $5 million in payments that will be administered to the federal government.
A nursing home operator known as Health Services Management did not admit liability as part of a Texas nursing home abuse settlement, however, they agreed to pay $5 million to settle claims that they billed Medicare and Medicaid for subpar services at their Texas rehabilitation facility and nursing home.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the Texas nursing home abuse settlement came about as a result of the facility’s failure to provide appropriate care.
The company manages nursing homes both in Texas and across the United States. However, they allegedly billed Texas Medicaid as well as federal Medicare for services that were never given to patients at their Huntsville Health Care Center. Furthermore, they were accused of giving substandard treatment to patients.
A whistleblower, the former marketing director of the nursing home, argued in a lawsuit filed in 2015 that she witnessed both neglect and patient abuse, both of which underpinned the claims brought forward in the Texas nursing home abuse settlement.
She argued that executives for the nursing home edited grievance reports to cover up patient complaints and evidence of mistreatment.
Furthermore, she alleged that patients were not allowed to use the bathroom regularly, that their clothes were not changed on a regular basis, and that they were not bathed in accordance with general guidelines. The whistleblower also alleged that the patients were not treated appropriately when infections emerged.
Federal and Texas prosecutors investigated the claims and determined in the Texas nursing home abuse settlement that between January of 2013 and December of 2015, Medicaid and Medicare were billed for services that were so deficient and substandard or not provided at all that they could have been possibly harmful to specific patients.
What You Should Know About Rights of Whistleblowers
Unfortunately, claims of nursing home abuse in Texas and elsewhere are on the rise. Given that many older people may need long-term care services in a nursing home at some point, it’s potentially devastating to discover the instances of neglect and abuse that have occurred and injured patients. Some residents and their family members are taking a stand and filing legal claims to hold these facilities and staff members accountable.
Whistleblowers play an important role in notifying the government about alleged problems involving substandard care. Whistleblowers receive government protections if they come forward with information ultimately used in a successful investigation when reasonable belief of fraud exists.
If you or someone you know has witnessed issues that could endanger patients or involve negligence, consult with the experienced attorneys at McDonald Worley to learn more about your rights. The case evaluation is FREE so call today.