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Nursing Home or Graveyard

Ninety-six-years-old and suffering from dementia, was moved into a corporate-run nursing home in California. After only 21 days, he had already suffered severe dehydration and lost 5 pounds – the result of a nursing staff that had completely neglected to follow his well-established and doctor-ordered nutrition plans.

While the staff was too overworked to feed Mr. Furumura, they were under strict orders from the nursing home’s owner to give the 96-year-old excessive amounts of physical therapy. Surely food or water would have been more helpful, but the horrific truth of corporate-run nursing homes is that they make unimaginable sums of money from taxpayer-funded programs like Medicare and Medicaid. The more “therapy” that homes administer, the better for the business’s bottom line. And best of all (for them): The state picks up the tab.

Such financial incentives lead many for-profit nursing home operators to give patients treatments they don’t need. In the case of Jack Furumura, not only was such rigorous therapy totally unnecessary, it was reckless and flat-out outrageous. After 3 weeks, he had to be discharged directly to a hospital. He died only a few weeks later.

Meanwhile, the Nursing home received $600 from the state for each day they administered their therapy. All told, the Federal Insurance Program for the Elderly and Disabled paid $13,468.19 for Mr. Furumura’s “care” –– and he is only but one of hundreds of patients likely on similar regimens. Mr. Furumura’s case is, sadly, not unique — private homes rake in money for overworking and ultimately killing people they’re charged to protect. Nationally, private nursing homes overbill Medicare by at least $1.5 Billion every single year.

How is it possible that such heartless business tactics are being used in an industry that already profits billions? Why pick on an elderly population for a few extra dollars in a market that has no shortage of cash flow — and worse, in a market that capitalizes on vulnerability and death?   (Continue Reading)

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Nursing Home or Graveyard

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Nursing Home or Graveyard


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