Illinois Nursing Home Law Changes

On July 29th the Governor of Illinois signed into law Senate Bill 326, which resulted from strong collaboration between state agencies, members of the Illinois General Assembly, advocates, home and community based service providers, residents and the nursing home profession, led by Governor Quinn’s Nursing Home Safety Task Force.The new law remakes the system of admission to nursing homes, ensuring that only those in need of 24-hour skilled care are admitted. The law also strengthens the screening process to prevent residents with violent criminal histories from being placed with vulnerable, older adults.The law sets higher nursing home quality and staffing requirements, raises penalties for violations, and increases inspections and monitoring. The new law also requires nursing homes to help all residents achieve their highest level of functioning and prepare to transition to more independent, community-based living.

The Governor also signed Senate Bill 2863, which is designed to reduce fraud and abuse in nursing homes. An initiative of the Office of the Attorney General, the law requires prompt reporting of fraud, abuse and neglect in nursing homes, broadens the definition of criminal neglect, and requires greater disclosure by nursing home owners. Both laws went to into effect immediately.

For a link to SB 326– see Public Act 96-1372  
http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/96/096-1372.htm

For a link to SB 2863– see Public Act 96-1373
http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/publicacts/fulltext.asp?Name=096-1373

William Wombacher
www.wombacherlaw.com

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