92% of Nursing Homes Employ Ex-Convicts

Sunday, March 06, 2011
Placing a relative in a nursing home means putting them in the hands of businesses that often hire convicted criminals.
A report from the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found that 92% of all nursing homes employ at least one worker with a criminal conviction. In total, ex-cons make up about 5% of nursing home workers in the country, the IG estimated after checking with a random sample of 260 nursing homes certified by Medicare.
Of those workers with convictions, 44% had committed property crimes (i.e. theft, vandalism, writing bad checks), 16% had drug-related crimes and 13% had committed crimes against people, including sexual offenses.
The report also noted that eight states—Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming—don’t require operators to conduct background checks before hiring employees.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
Nursing Facilities' Employment of Individuals with Criminal Convictions (Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General)


Proforma Screening Solutions 13 years ago
This study certainly brings attention to the important issue of who’s caring for our nation’s indigent population. That said, there are some important ideas left out of the study that should remain forefront in the discussion: 1. A Thorough Background Check is the RIGHT Thing to Do! More than just a legal or business liability decision, the obligation to know all that we can about the people who are trusted in a nursing home setting should not be understated. Relied upon to protect and care for their “customers”, nursing facilities have an extraordinary duty of care – both morally and legally — to conduct thorough background checks on all employees. Not only at the time of hire but throughout an individual’s tenure. This goes beyond a business need or legal requirement down to the heart of the matter; that it’s simply the right thing to do. 2. When something bad happens, no one wants to hear you say, “But we were in compliance!” Simply complying with minimal legal requirements as it relates to background screening employees in a nursing facility is not likely to shelter you from criticisms, or worse, the civil liability that arises when something bad happens. Remember, the general public has a certain expectation of safety in a nursing home environment. Reasonably so, when you consider that nursing homes and similar facilities are afforded the same level of trust as a hospital or medical facility. Doing only what’s required is simply not going to protect your national brand one iota if you’re faced with headlines like these compiled by the website, AboutLawsuits.com: * Nursing Home Lawsuit Over Infected Bedsores Results in $600K Verdict (11/4/2010) * Florida Nursing Home Neglect Lawsuit Results in $114M Verdict (7/26/2010) * Philadelphia Nursing Home Bedsore Lawsuit Results in $6M Award (3/31/2010) * New York City Nursing Home Neglect Lawsuit Results in $19M Award (12/31/2009) * Elder Neglect Lawsuit Verdict of $1.3M Against California Nursing Home (7/10/2009) While the OIG study focused on certified Medicare and Medicaid nursing facilities, the study offers an important reminder to all facilities, from retirement communities to Alzheimer care facilities. Screen your employees well. A solid employment screening program should include the following components: * A clearly-defined background screening policy and procedures * Comprehensive methodology that includes criminal checks, verifications, and personal record checks, as determined by the role-related risk of the individual * Consistently-applied criteria for evaluating and making decisions on the background check results * Compliance with all regulatory requirements * Measures to uphold fair hiring and anti-discriminatory practices To read more visit: http://www.proformascreening.com/blog/2011/03/background-screening-nursing-homes/
Pray4Peace 13 years ago
The ex-offenders served their time per our laws. Does no one believe in the Bible and redemption? Remember the prodigal son, and thief on the cross. Ex-offenders are not being given preferential treatment. It is as simple as few others being willing to work in nursing homes. Too many other employers will not hire former offenders. Ex-offenders who have jobs and support while adjusting to life on the "outside" are more likely to stay out of prison. That saves us a lot of money--almost $50,000 each year for each inmate in California. More important, their having jobs and support helps prevent new crime and new victims.

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