Some Illinois County coroners would like to see a new law requiring nursing homes to report every death for investigation into potential abuse or neglect. For the full article, click here. According to the article, the Illinois State Department of Public Health conducted a pilot project in 10 Illinois counties over the course of a year to determine whether a policy to investigate nursing home deaths by a coroner should be applied to all 102 counties in the State. However, the study has not resulted in any anticipated lobbying for new legislation. Notably though the study showed:
an 11 percent increase in nursing-home complaints filed with the state by coroners and all other sources.
Some counties have noted that such a law would require more funding, including Cook County, in which Chicago is located. The article pointed out that in large counties such as Cook, coroners and medical examiners look into nursing home deaths only after they receive complaints from family members or if criminal activity is suspected. This is where Plaintiff’s lawyers step in–if nobody else has the funding or energy or responsibility for uncovering the truth of how nursing home residents are treated, a lawyer will.