As our parents and grandparents reach an age when they can no longer care for themselves, we recognize that it may be in their best interests to move them into a nursing home community, which can give around-the-clock care and companionship.
Unfortunately, not all nursing homes treat our loved ones as we would wish, sometimes to the point of brutality or negligence. But could skin color play any role in this.
A recent article from MyFox Memphis unveiled a tragic statistic: predominately African American nursing homes deliver poorer care. They also tend to perform worse financially than homes with no or few minorities.
In long-term care facilities without African American residents, revenue and profit margins tend to be higher, and health care outcomes seem to be more positive, according to a study that addressed eleven thousand nursing homes across the country.
The trend seems to be partly tied to the fact that more African American residents rely on Medicaid for long-term care more than others; reimbursement rates under Medicaid are lower than private pay or self-pay rates.
Because of lower financial performance, research shows that African American residents are exposed to lower quality care in these facilities; pressure ulcer prevention and help with walking are less common in nursing homes with a high proportion of African American residents, for example.
There is one bright spot from the study, however: within facilities, there doesn’t seem to be differences in how African American and white residents are treated.
As a nursing home negligence attorney in Northern Mississippi and the Memphis metro area, I’m frustrated by these findings. Each elderly resident deserves the best quality care., as they’ve helped build the America we enjoy today.
If you have any questions about this study or believe that a loved one may be experiencing nursing home negligence, contact us today for help.