Below is an excerpt from an article published on January 31 by The Boston Globe detailing a report release by Disability Law Center, covering the harmful practices of the neurobehavioral unit at the Bear Mountain nursing home in Worcester. Nina Loewenstein, senior attorney for the Disability Law Center, is quoted.
A nursing home can be a supportive environment for elderly residents to live out their last years with companionship and medical care. It can alternatively be a place where vulnerable people with severe physical and mental health needs are warehoused and neglected.
A report released Wednesday by the Disability Law Center examining a neurobehavioral unit at Bear Mountain nursing home in Worcester illuminates in stark terms what allegedly happens when people with schizophrenia, dementia, and other ailments are left alone, with few programs and inadequate staffing. The Disability Law Center writes, speaking broadly about nursing home patients, “They become vulnerable to abuse and neglect because of inadequate staffing and clinical expertise, excessive use of medication, substandard conditions, and prolonged isolation.”
The report, while difficult to read, cries out for a response — from Bear Mountain and the state. Lawmakers and state administrators have responded to nursing homes’ financial needs by increasing reimbursement rates. But as the report points out, rates need to be paired with oversight to ensure the money is going to provide at least a minimal standard of care.
Read the article here.