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Area Agency on Aging Council Calls for Better Protections for Residents in Nursing Facilities

The Advisory Council of the Central Coast Commission for Senior Citizens, Area Agency on Aging voted at its November meeting to urge that the 2015-16 state budget under development be adjusted to reflect sufficient staff and resources to protect the residents of skilled nursing facilities through adequate and knowledgeable staffing at the state Department of Public Health.

“The Area Agency on Aging Advisory Council reviewed the recent State Audit Report that indicated that the state Department of Public Health had a backlog of nearly 11,000 complaints regarding care in skilled nursing facilities,” said Amy Mallett, chairwoman of the AAA Advisory Council. “The members support efforts to protect these residents, who are our family members and the most vulnerable elderly and disabled.

“It is unacceptable that the state Department of Public Health is allowed to have residents in such a situation. The findings in this report reveal that the state department has failed to meet its responsibilities.

“In addition, the State Audit Report identified numerous other problems and presented recommendations. While adequate funding may be a problem, it is not understandable why this situation has not been investigated and a Plan of Correction implemented.

“The council urges all citizens to contact their state senator or state Assembly person to seek remedy of this situation. We need to be sure that the residents of facilities are not forgotten and allowed to live in situations that are unsafe and unhealthy. Urge your elected official to demand compliance with the Audit Report recommendations.”

For additional information, contact Mallett or AAA Director Joyce Ellen Lippman at 805.925.9554 or 800.510.2020.

— Joyce Ellen Lippman is executive director of the Area Agency on Aging.

 
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