The CDC disclosed that most nursing homes prescribe antibiotics the wrong way 40% to 75% of the time, and this comes back with strong consequences on the aging folks taking them. The federal health watchdog listed – wrong drugs, wrong dose, wrong duration, unnecessary prescriptions, and others as bad for patients in nursing homes. It is a common misconception to think that antibiotics should be taken to treat everyday ailments such as the flu or common cold; however, these are viruses and antibiotics are only meant to treat serious infections. The truth is, every time someone takes an antibiotic, sensitive bacteria are killed, but antibiotic-resistant bacteria survive, multiply, and can spread to others. Additionally, antibiotics wipe out all of the body’s bacteria including good infection-fighting bacteria. The more antibiotics are misused and overused, the more bacterial resistance to these antibiotics will increase and eventually the same antibiotics won't be able to fight off the same infection as effectively. Some antibiotics may even cause harmful life-threatening illnesses or reactions on their own. Antibiotics are some of the most commonly prescribed medications in nursing homes. In nursing homes, high rates of antibiotics are prescribed to prevent urinary tract infection (UTI) and respiratory tract infection (RTI). Prescribing antibiotics before there is an infection often contributes to misuse. Often residents are given antibiotics just because they are colonized with (carrying) bacteria that are not making the person sick. Prescribing antibiotics for colonization contributes to antibiotic overuse. When patients are transferred between facilities, for example from a nursing home to a...

Not Really. What is not printed in bold type, but should be is that, with a Medicare Advantage Plan you covered by AN INSURANCE COMPANY. And that is not a good thing. This plan is only for people who can't afford to pay a premium. When it is time to enroll in Medicare, it can be a challenge to determine if traditional Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan will provide “the best” coverage for a particular individual. Traditional Medicare is administered by the federal government, and Medicare Advantage plans are administered by private insurance companies. Let’s explore some of the basic similarities and differences between these two Medicare benefit programs. Traditional Medicare offers one standard package of benefits that is the same for all enrollees. As discussed last week, there are two parts to the package, known as Part A and Part B. Upon initial enrollment, an individual is automatically enrolled in traditional Medicare Part A, and may choose whether or not to accept Part B coverage, which requires a premium. Usually the premium for Part B is deducted automatically from a Social Security recipient’s monthly benefit. Prescription drug coverage (Part D) must be purchased separately from Parts A and B. An additional option that is available is Medigap coverage, which is supplemental insurance to cover items that Medicare does not pay, such as copays, coinsurance, and deductibles. Individuals who have insurance coverage through an employer or retirement plan may not need to consider Medigap coverage since their secondary insurance may already pick up these...

When faced with the very difficult decision on how best to care for a loved one who can no longer care for themselves, many Americans turn to nursing homes. They do so with the expectation that these nursing homes will provide adequate care and a safe environment. However, this is not always the case. With a high ratio of turnover, underpaid and untrained staff, nursing homes are rampant with instances of negligence, neglect, and even wrongful death. The only remedy injured patients and their families have is the ability to hold them accountable in a court of law. Mandatory arbitration clauses take away this ability. With little or no oversight, nursing homes have no incentive to prevent horrible nursing home abuse cases from being repeated. Fine print buried in nursing home admissions contracts is depriving nursing home residents and their families of their constitutional rights. During the incredibly stressful nursing home admissions process, many nursing home corporations push residents and their families into signing away their right to go to court — even in instances when residents suffer severe neglect, serious injuries, death or sexual and physical abuse. Although many states prohibit mandatory arbitration clauses a U.S. Supreme Court decisions in 2012 is turning these state prohibition on arbitration clauses on their heads. In response to increasing runaway verdicts with large awards for punitive damages, many nursing homes are including arbitration clauses in their admission agreements. The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Marmet Health Care Center v. Brown, 132 S.Ct. 1201 (Feb. 2012), held that...