How Do I Report Nursing Home Abuse in Arizona?
January 25, 2018
Nursing home residents depend on staff members and caregivers to help them daily tasks, which makes them highly susceptible to abuse and neglect. If your loved one is currently residing in a nursing home, you should know how to report abuse or neglect if it occurs.
The Phillips Law Group’s Phoenix nursing home abuse attorneys believe it is critical that families and loved ones of nursing home residents know where to turn to report abuse. Below, we discuss who is required to report nursing home abuse and which state agencies in Arizona you should contact if you suspect a nursing home resident has been abused.
If your loved one has been abused or neglected, contact our legal team to schedule a free, no obligation consultation. We will discuss your claim to learn which legal options may be available to help your loved one.
Who is Required to Report Nursing Home Abuse in Arizona?
Under Arizona law, certain people and health care providers are legally required to report nursing home abuse or neglect, according to A.R.S. Â§ 46-451.
The following parties are legally required to report nursing home abuse:
- Nurse practitioners
- Residents or interns
- Social workers
- Peace officers
- Persons responsible for the care of a vulnerable adult
If someone has reason to believe abuse or neglect has taken place, he or she must be report the abuse to Adult Protective Services or a peace officer immediately.
Where to Report Abuse
In Arizona, nursing home abuse can be reported to the following agencies:
Local Law Enforcement
If you believe a nursing home resident is being physically abused or is in immediate danger from his or her abuser, you should immediately contact a local law enforcement agency. The appropriate division will investigate your claim and involve the proper agencies.
Long-Term Care Ombudsman
Long-term care ombudsmen advocate for nursing home residents’ rights, quality of life and care in nursing homes throughout Arizona.
Long-term care ombudsmen regularly visit nursing homes and assisted living facilities to investigate and resolve complaints filed by residents, loved ones and family members, facility staff members, and other agencies.
The ombudsman will investigate the abuse complaint and utilize state or local agencies to resolve the issue. An ombudsman will also inform nursing home residents and families of their rights and the resources that may be available to them.
Adult Protective Services
The Arizona Department of Economic Security’s Adult Protective Services is tasked with investigating reports of exploitation committed against vulnerable adults, including nursing home residents.
To file a report with the Adult Protective Services, you may call the agency’s elder abuse hotline, 1-877-SOS-ADULT from Monday to Friday between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
If you would like to file a nursing home abuse complaint online, you may file a report anytime at www.azdes.gov/reportadultabuse.
Department of Health Services
The Arizona Department of Health Services Bureau of Long Term Care Licensing works to protect nursing home residents’ health and safety by investigating complaints of nursing home abuse.
The agency is comprised of teams of registered nurses and other health care professionals who conduct annual state licensure and Medicare certification and recertification inspections to ensure compliance with federal and state regulations. This includes:
- Nursing home residents’ rights
- Resident behavior and facility practices
- Quality of life
- Resident assessment
- Nursing services
- Quality of care
- Dietary services
- Physician services
- Specialized rehabilitation services
- Dental services
- Pharmacy services
- Infection control
- Physical environment
- Nursing home administration
You can contact the Bureau of Long Term Care Licensing’s Phoenix offices by calling 602-364-2690.
Offices of the Arizona Attorney General
The Offices of the Arizona Attorney General’s Taskforce Against Senior Abuse (TASA) investigates complaints regarding physical, emotional and financial abuse. TASA is comprised three departments, called sections, within the Attorney General’s Office that actively investigate nursing home and elder abuse:
- Criminal Fraud Section: This department investigates and prosecutes businesses and individuals who target Arizona senior citizens.
- Consumer Protection and Advocacy Section: This department works to protect seniors’ assets from business fraud by enforcing the Consumer Fraud Act and other fraud-related statutes.
- Health Care Fraud and Abuse Section: This department investigates and prosecutes cases of physical, emotional and sexual abuse of nursing home residents, as well as falsification of medical records and inflated or false Medicaid billing.
To report abuse to TASA, call 602-542-7806 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Contact a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
If your loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse, do not hesitate to report the abuse to the proper agencies as soon as possible.
Unfortunately, many nursing home abuse victims are unable to report abuse committed against themselves. This means it is often left up to the victim’s family members or loved ones to recognize signs of abuse.
Phillips Law Group’s dedicated nursing home abuse lawyers are committed to protecting the rights of nursing home residents. We will help you file a claim against the nursing home or caregiver behind the abuse your loved one suffered. Our attorneys work on contingency and are only paid if you obtain justice and compensation for your loved one.
Call 1-800-706-3000 to schedule a free consultation.
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