The Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued a report this past March, analyzing 35,000 nursing home employee records of nursing homes against criminal records maintained by the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).

 

92% of nursing homes employ one or more people with a criminal conviction.  Nearly half of nursing homes employed people with five or more criminal convictions.  Although most of the convictions took place prior to employment, 16% of the convictions were for offenses after being hired.

 

Although nursing home facilities are prohibited from hiring or employing persons found guilty of abusing, neglecting or mistreating residents, apparently this prohibition does not extend to workers who had previously been found guilty of crimes against property.

 

The NY Times reported that although most of the criminal convictions were for activities such as burglary or shoplifting, some  were for personal crimes such as assault.

 

Residents in nursing homes are a vulnerable section of our population.  These residents are often left alone with aides and supervision is poor.  Nursing homes must do a better job in screening employees.

 

 

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