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Long-term analysis of nursing home quality of care has recently been completed by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This reporting substantiates the lower quality of care provided by for-profit nursing homes.

Of the 35 nursing homes in the 100-mile region surrounding Traverse City, nearly half received only one or two “stars” (on a scale of one to five stars, five being the best) in one or more quality of care measures, indicating poor quality of care and evidence of neglect, injury and/or deviations from the standards of care required by state law.

Two nursing homes, Tendercare of Traverse City (Birchwood), and Metron of Big Rapids, each earned the distinction of being named a “Special Focus Facility (SFF)” due to a history of persistent poor quality of care.

In addition to harmful deviations from the standard of care, there are a growing number of incidents of outright abuse by unqualified caregivers who are seriously underpaid and under-trained for the rigors of nursing home care and often take out personal frustration by abusing residents. You have probably heard about some of the nationally known incidents, including the most recent in Minnesota. The allegations in the case involving teenagers Brianna Broitzman, Ashton Larson and 4 other teenage care givers at the Good Samaritan Society nursing home in Albert Lea Minnesota, are some of the worst I’ve seen as an attorney.

I urge Injury Board readers to review the attached list. Make sure that if you or someone you know has a family member or friend in a nursing home, that you have checked whether or not the nursing home in question has a history of providing the type of care and attention to detail that you and yours deserve.

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