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Georgia Bill of Rights for Residents of Long Term Care Facilities

Under Georgia law, nursing home residents are entitled to certain rights and freedoms. Being familiar with these rights can help you determine if your loved one is being treated appropriately and given the opportunity to make choices and control his or her care. A violation of one of these rights may also give rise to a grievance and legal claim for compensation.

Nursing Home Resident Bill of Rights

Nursing home residents have the right to make basic choices concerning their care, including the right to:

  • Get up and go to bed as desired
  • Enter and leave as desired
  • Participate in the development of his or her care plan
  • Refuse medications, dietary restrictions, and treatment
  • Associate with whomever they desire on or off facility grounds
  • Choose or change physicians
  • Choose a pharmaceutical supplier
  • Vote in any election with no interference
  • Receive visitors in private
  • Participate in social, family, religious, and community activities
  • Be free from discrimination based on source of payment
  • Be free from discrimination based on physical or mental condition

Along with the rights listed above, the Bill of Rights also gives nursing home residents (as well as any representative or guardian) grievance rights and the right to file an action in court if their personal rights are violated. A nursing home resident has the right to file an oral or written complaint to the nursing home administrator or their appropriate state or community representative. The Bill of Rights set forth specific timelines by which the complaint must be addressed. If the complaint cannot be resolved, the nursing home resident has the right to have their complaint heard by an impartial referee or file an action in court.

Physical & Chemical Restraints

Nursing home residents have the right to be free from physical or chemical restraints, isolation, or other restrictions. If restraints are used, they must be authorized by a written order from a physician. The order must also specify the duration and circumstances under which the restraints are to be used, which can only be to the minimum extent necessary to protect the resident or others from immediate injury. Restraints cannot be used for any other purpose.

Transfer & Discharge

Except for certain limited circumstances, a nursing home resident has the right not to be discharged or transferred to another facility against his or her wishes. These reasons include an emergency situation, injury or illness to the resident if he or she is not transferred non-payment of fees, the resident no longer needs nursing home care, or the facility doesn’t participate in the program paying for the resident’s care. Unless the situation is an emergency, the facility must give a 30-day written notice of intent to discharge the resident.

Contact Us for Help with a Residents’ Bill of Rights Violation

If you believe your loved one is the victim of a nursing home residents’ rights violation that resulted in an injury, please contact the legal team at Katz Personal Injury Lawyers in Atlanta to schedule a free initial consultation. Monetary damages and other relief may be available. Contact our nursing home abuse attorneys at (404) 460-0101 to confidentially discuss your unique situation.

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