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Feds sue nursing homes to cut overmedication

Overmedicating of nursing home patients continues in California, says a federal lawsuit filed against two homes earlier this month.

Facilities in Watsonville, California, are accused of inappropriately administering drugs like Haldol and Risperdal to patients, causing negative changes in their health, according to 90.1 FM WABE, an Atlanta, Georiga NPR affiliate.

Almost one-fifth of nursing home patients nationwide are prescribed antipsychotic drugs, the radio station reported, despite the significant risks those medications come with.

The lawsuit details the account of an 86-year-old man who was administered to country Villa Watsonville West walking on his own and speaking clearly. The lawsuit says he was given Haldol and Risperdal and that the medications left him bedridden and susceptible to infections.

Haldol and Risperdal are used to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, WABE reports.

The patient’s condition got so bad he was read last rites at the hospital, WABE reports. The report also said the man was overprescribed without his or his family’s consent.

The U.S. attorney for Northern California said the suit claims the facilities provided “grossly inadequate, materially substandard and/or worthless services.”

WABE reports the nursing homes received tens of millions of dollars from Medicare and Medicaid for those services.

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The Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm represents clients in cases involving catastrophic injury caused by nursing homes and other care facilities that fail to provide proper care, including medication abuse and errors. If you believe your loved one has been harmed due neglect or abuse in a nursing home, take action and contact the Kosieradzki • Smith Law Firm online or call us toll-free at (877) 552-2873 to set up a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.