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Federal Report:Florida Program to Protect Elders Undermined

Posted on September 8, 2011

A new federal report says that a volunteer office that is a watchdog for assisted living facilities and nursing homes in Florida has been corrupted by politics and industry as well as interference from the governor’s office.

The U.S. Administration on Aging investigated the firing of the head of the Florida Long-term Care Ombudsman Program. In a 31-page report issued Thursday, September 1, the agency found the volunteers are unable to do their job of protecting the state’s elderly and disabled because they are so hamstrung by politics. The ombudsman was fired even though she had an exemplary review as someone committed to promoting the best care and quality of life for residents.

In a special report by the Miami Herald, Neglected to Death, volunteers were prevented from speaking to the public about failures in elderly housing after behind-the-scenes efforts did not make improvements. These failures included poor training, bed sores, filthy facilities and bathrooms, broken air conditioning, stained floors and an inability to keep track of residents. Right after Gov. Scott took office in January the state’s ombudsman program director was fired even though he was considered a dedicated public servant. His dismissal was called a “grave blow to the program,” according to the federal report.

Farah & Farah Nursing Home Attorneys
Ever since we opened our doors in 1979, Farah & Farah has heard stories of mistreatment carried out by some nursing home staff. The atrocities are usually covered up by personnel but our nursing home attorneys in Florida understand how to recognize and prove neglect and abuse of our elderly. If you suspect your loved one has been victimized, has suffered physical or sexual abuse, intimidation, is acting differently, afraid and has stories of fear to tell, you cannot act soon enough. We care about your family member and will make plans to immediately meet in a confidential and complimentary consultation. Call us at 1-800-533-3555 as soon as possible.

Source: http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/09/02/2388104/program-to-protect-elders-undermined.html