OK Activists Want Nursing Home Reforms After Poor Report

Wednesday, August 14th 2013, 7:21 pm
By: News 9

Activists are calling on the state legislature to take a look at nursing home care during the upcoming session on tort reform.

The push comes after a national group called Families for Better Care released its findings for the country's best and worst states for elderly care. Oklahoma received and "F" from the organization and came in ranked 48th out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

"This grade represents rapes, sexual assaults, physical assaults, abuse, neglect, negligent acts," said activist Wes Bledsoe.

11/30/2012 Related Story: Caught On Tape: Elderly Woman Tortured In OKC Nursing Home 

He said that lawmakers need to act now to protect the elderly during the upcoming special session on tort reform.

"[Gov. Fallin] is back in for a special legislative session to protect the very same people who are responsible for this grade."

For the three daughters of Eryetha Mayberry, the effort is already too late. They caught staff members at Quail Creek Nursing and Rehab Center on a hidden camera abusing their mother, who has since passed away.

"When you have worked all your life and think that you would have some dignity and some good care as an elderly person and to be treated like that is awful, it's inhumane," said Sandra Cisper, Mayberry's daughter.

Cisper lives with the guilt of not being there to protect her mother and she does not want that to happen to another family.

12/18/2013 Related Story: OK Advocates Demand Cameras In Nursing Homes After Abuse Caught On Tape 

Rep. Richard Morrissette of Oklahoma City is spearheading the push for an interim study looking at specific problems reported by nursing home clients.

"If we're going to have a special session having to do with so-called business community, and improper lawsuits, maybe we could spend a little time dealing with the fact that we rank 48th out of 50 states in the care of our elderly and disabled in our nursing homes. Would that be a reasonable idea? Maybe somebody ought to think about that," he said.

House Speaker T.W. Shannon has denied the interim study proposed by Morrissette. Activists, however, hope he changes his mind and allows it during this special session.

More information on the study by Families for Better Care: www.nursinghomereportcards.com