Know your legal rights in nursing homes

Elderly woman touching face of young female nurse

Nursing homes are private residential facilities that provide the medical and general care required by their residents, whether they are elderly, infirm or suffering from a medical condition. The federal government has established certain regulations and policies to ensure that these facilities uphold the rights of their residents, and it’s important for residents and their families to be aware of their rights while living in these facilities to ensure that they are not infringed upon. Here is a brief guide from a leading elder law attorney in New Jersey.

Four levels of healthcare facility 

Nursing homes are categorized into four different groups according to the level of care and services they provide. This includes low-level care facilities, for example, adult boarding facilities, up to those that provide the highest level of nursing home care in the form of skilled nursing facilities. Each type of facility will be subjected to a different set of policies and regulations, which residents or their legal proxies are required to read and acknowledge their receipt of the policy in writing.

Important rights for nursing home residents

The list of rights residents of nursing homes are entitled to is justifiably extensive, and it is important to be aware of them, as residents are often in a more vulnerable state that opens them to opportunities for serious physical, emotional and financial abuse. Some of the most important of these rights include:

  • The right to see family, ombudspersons, resident advocates, doctors, service providers and state/government representatives.
  • The right to privacy for their medical and personal records.
  • The right to keep and use personal possessions unless they pose a safety risk.
  • The right to apply for and utilize Medicare and Medicaid benefits.
  • The right to receive the same treatment whether you are paying privately or through Medicare/Medicaid.
  • The right to choose their own physician.
  • They must not be kept apart from other residents against their will.
  • The right to be free from physical, mental or financial abuse.
  • The right to stay in the nursing home unless it is deemed necessary for their welfare or no longer require their services.
  • The right to 30 days’ notice to appeal a proposed discharge or transfer.


Compassionate legal advice on Medicare, elder rights and law in NJ 

If you would like assistance in understanding your rights and protecting the rights of an elderly loved one, speak to Frank R. Campisano today. Experienced in elder law, compassionate and committed to his clients, you’ll receive the highest quality legal expertise and guidance that will help you secure better care. In addition, you can also prepare additional estate planning documents, such as your Last Will and Testament, Financial Power of Attorney documents, Medical Directives and Healthcare Proxy documentation. For more compassionate legal guidance and a free consultation, please contact us or visit our website today.

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