The coronavirus pandemic has had an adverse impact on just about everyone; however, some populations have been hit harder than others. One population that has been hit particularly hard is those who are of advanced age. In particular, individuals living in senior living centers have been particularly vulnerable to developing severe complications for the virus. As a result, strict health and safety protocols have been put in place to mitigate the spread of the virus in these specific populations. Unfortunately, some senior living centers are still falling fall short of these recommendations. Now, they are paying the price.
Recently, the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced that senior living providers have been fined more than $3.4 million due to violations. In particular, some senior living centers, such as the Friendship Senior Options in IL, have been fined a significant amount of money due to severe violations. For example, some senior living centers have been fined due to violations of strict respirator policies, which are used to help people breathe. Another senior living center located in Arlington, Texas, was fined close to $2,000 for not keeping appropriate records related to illnesses, injuries, and fatalities.
Even if these violations were not intentional, they are examples of negligence. Many families would prefer to take care of their loved ones on their own; however, they may not be able to do so due to the medical requirements of their elderly family members. Therefore, they trust nursing homes to take care of their family members instead. When nursing homes are not able to follow these policies, they place people at risk unnecessarily.
Even though it is good that a vaccine has been released, there is a difference between developing a vaccine and getting people vaccinated. Until enough people have been vaccinated, people with weakened immune systems, such as elderly individuals, are still going to be at risk of catching this virus and developing severe complication does a result. Without a doubt, regular inspections are going to continue. It is incumbent upon nursing homes and senior living centers to take care very well of their residents and employees. That way, we can prevent unnecessary deaths from taking place.