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Cook County Attorney Explains the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act

What rights do nursing home residents have?

Chicago Personal Injury Lawyer Helping Nursing Home Residents Protect Their Rights

When a person reaches an advanced age, they may no longer be able to fully care for themselves, and their family members may not be able to provide the ongoing care they need. In these cases, a person may need to reside in a nursing home or assisted living facility. Patients who live in these facilities should be sure to understand the rights provided to them by the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act, and they and their family members will want to take immediate action to address any instances of nursing home abuse or neglect.

If your loved one has experienced neglect or abuse as a nursing home resident, you should be sure to understand how you can protect their rights and hold a negligent facility responsible for their injuries. At the Kadzai Law Group, LLC, we will work with you to address the harm suffered by your family member and pursue compensation for their damages.

Rights Under the Nursing Home Care Act

Because nursing home residents may be vulnerable to abuse, neglect, financial exploitation, or other forms of harm, Illinois law has provided them with a number of rights intended to protect their safety and ensure that they are treated with dignity and respect at all times. The rights provided to residents by the Nursing Home Care Act include:

  • The right to manage one's own finances - A resident should be able to address their own financial affairs, and these issues should only be handled by a nursing home if the resident or their legal guardian provides written authorization.
  • The right to personal property - Residents should be able to keep their own belongings and clothing. A facility should provide proper storage space for personal property and provide measures to prevent the loss or theft of valuable items.
  • The right to a personal physician - A resident may retain a doctor at their own expense or through public or private health insurance coverage. They should also be able to access their medical records and information about their diagnoses and treatments.
  • The right to make medical decisions - Residents have the right to accept or refuse life-sustaining treatment. They may also name a health care surrogate who can make decisions on their behalf if they lose the capacity to decide on their own medical care.
  • The right to privacy - Residents should be treated with respect and afforded privacy when discussing their medical and personal care. Discussions, consultations, and examinations should be discreet and confidential, and only those who are directly involved in providing care or receive permission from the patient should be present.
  • The right to be free from unreasonable restraint - Residents should not be physically restrained or confined unless informed consent is received from the resident or their guardian. In addition, patients should not be administered drugs unnecessarily as a means of chemical restraint.
  • The right to communication and visitation - A resident should be allowed to have private and unrestricted communication with anyone they wish. Private visits should be permitted at reasonable times.
  • The right to free exercise of religion - Residents should be allowed to practice their religion, and arrangements should be provided to allow a person to attend religious services. No religious beliefs or practices should be imposed on a nursing home resident.
  • The right to present grievances - A resident is allowed to make complaints to a nursing home's administrator or residents' advisory council, the Long-Term Care Facility Advisory Board, state government agencies, or anyone else without fear of reprisal, retaliation, or discharge from a facility.

Contact a Hyde Park Nursing Home Negligence Lawyer

If you believe that your loved one's rights have been violated and that they have experienced physical, emotional, or financial harm, Attorney David Kadzai can help you take legal action to recover financial compensation. To learn more about how we can help address nursing home abuse or neglect, contact our office at 312-229-0050 to schedule a free consultation. We represent clients on the south side of Chicago and throughout Cook County, including Merrionette Park, Evergreen Park, Riverdale, Calumet Heights, Burnham, Harvey, Oak Lawn, Burbank, Dixmoor, Robbins, Dolton, Jackson Park, Bedford Park, Calumet City, and Hyde Park.

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