At The Steele Law Firm, we are dedicated to holding nursing homes accountable for the care of their residents. We are committed to fighting against nursing homes who put profits over people, resulting in chronic understaffing, inadequate training, and insufficient policies and management. This can lead to severe injuries such as pressure ulcers, falls, or even death. Today, we are pleased to share a recent Supreme Court ruling that strengthens the rights of nursing home residents and their families, particularly those residing in publicly owned facilities.

The Supreme Court Ruling

In a landmark decision, the Supreme Court ruled that nursing home residents and their survivors can sue publicly owned facilities to protect their rights under the Federal Nursing Home Reform Act (FNHRA). This ruling, in a 7-2 decision, upheld a lower ruling against the Health and Hospital Corporation of Marion County, which operates publicly owned nursing homes in Indiana. The corporation had argued that the Medicaid system’s existing oversight and discipline systems were the right avenue for aggrieved parties to seek recourse. However, the Supreme Court disagreed, affirming the right of individuals to seek legal recourse through the courts.

The key points of the ruling include:

  1. Section 1983 permits individuals to sue to vindicate their rights secured by law. The FNHRA qualifies as a law for purposes of §1983.
  2. The text of the Act’s operative provisions refers to individual rights. The FNHRA secures the particular rights that the plaintiff invoked, without otherwise signaling that enforcement of those rights via §1983 is precluded as incompatible with the FNHRA’s remedial scheme.
  3. The court affirmed the judgment of the Court of Appeals, reinforcing the rights of individuals to seek legal recourse for violations of their rights under the FNHRA.

What This Means for You

This ruling is a significant victory for nursing home residents and their families. It affirms that the rights of residents are enforceable under law, and that nursing homes, including publicly owned ones, can be held accountable for violations of these rights. This decision strengthens the legal recourse available to individuals and families who have suffered due to nursing home abuse or neglect.

At The Steele Law Firm, we are committed to fighting for the rights of nursing home residents and their families. If you, or someone you love, was injured or died because of Kansas or Missouri nursing home abuse and/or neglect, let us fight for you. Reach out to us today at (816) 466-5947 or through our website. Let us stand with you.