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Justice Dept. setting up nursing home abuse task force in Ohio

A partially nationwide federal task force that will investigate allegations of nursing home abuse and neglect will include Ohio. The southern district of the state, including Columbus, Cincinnati and Dayton, will be under the new task force’s purview, according to the Dayton Daily News.

The Ohio task force will be one of 10 the U.S. Justice Department will set up. They are the result of a massive investigation by federal and state authorities in 2014 that led to a $38 million settlement for with Extendicare Health Services, which operates a chain of nursing homes. Investigators found “worthless” or “materially substandard” care at six Ohio Extendicare facilities, and 33 nationwide. The company was also accused of billing Medicare for false claims.

The task forces will be made up of federal prosecutors, along with their state and local colleagues, state Medicare fraud units and representatives of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Their duty will be to identify and punish “bad actors in the nursing home and long-term care industry,” an official with the Justice Department said.

Ohio nursing homes may be wondering how this new task force will affect the way they do business. Most nursing homes deliver quality care for their residents, but an accusation of neglect or abuse can lead to litigation, fines and a major hit to the facility’s reputation.

Of course, not every claim is legitimate, and an attorney can help you clear your nursing home’s name. For more information, contact a personal injury defense firm.

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