Nursing home abuse is a wide ranging term that can include everything from physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation. The Chicago Law Firm, Levin & Perconti, have a comprehensive guide regarding nursing home abuse. They write that any kind of abuse leads to serious consequences for our loved ones who have been entrusted to the care of professionals we thought were watching out for their best interest and safety. This abuse can lead to physical injuries, emotional harm, and even death as we have seen especially in the early months of the pandemic. The Maryland Office of Health Care Quality (OHCQ) provides oversight for Nursing Homes, Assisted Living Communities, and Adult Medical Day Care centers as well as other types of community-based programs.
OHCQ is responsible for the licensure and oversight of Assisted Living programs. Regulations related to Assisted Living programs are found in the Code of Regulations of Maryland (COMAR) 10.07.14. OHCQ is responsible for the oversight of Adult Medical Day Care centers for the elderly and medically handicapped adults, including surveys for pre-licensure, licensure, change of ownership, follow-up, and to investigate complaints and facility reported incidents. Regulations related to Adult Medical Day Care centers are found in COMAR 10.12.04. For Nursing Homes, OHCQ is responsible for oversight, including licensure, certification, and investigating complaints. See COMAR 10.07.02 and COMAR 10.07.09 for the Residents Bill of Rights.
The Older Americans Act required the creation of Long-Term Care (LTC) Ombudsman. They are independent advocates for residents of Nursing Homes and Assisted Living programs. They work to resolve problems of individual residents and to bring about changes at the local, state, and national levels that will improve residents’ care and quality of life. You can find information on how to file a Complaint and the Protecting Older and Vulnerable Adults resource page here.
The Maryland Health Care Commission provides information on Maryland Assisted Living programs. The Maryland Department of Aging has a complete handbook on Assisted Living programs and resources. This handbook provides information on contract tips, what to do when you have a complaint, and alternatives to Assisted Living.
MAADS is the primary representative for medical day care providers within the State of Maryland. MAADS’ members provide services and programs to over 5500 of Maryland’s elderly, handicapped and adults with disabilities and their families and support groups.
The Maryland Association of Adult Day Services (MAADS) is an information and education source to its members and consultants to the medical day care and senior services industry, the public, the media, and the government.