California Law Aims to Aid Appeals Process for Nursing Home Discharges

A new California law effective Wednesday will require nursing homes to offer residents copies of any information on their eviction, helping make appeals against the discharge easier to file.

Evictions are one of the most common complaints reported to California’s Long Term Care Ombudsman programs, noted a report produced by CalMatters.

In the past five years, the state’s nursing homes have also been cited more than 1,800 times for problems with discharges, the article noted.


The additional information residents will receive can help them understand the facility’s discharge decision, and possibly file an appeal, Tony Chicotel, a staff attorney with California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform, the bill’s sponsor, told CalMatters.

“Very few residents know about their appeal rights or feel confident to exercise them,” Chicotel said. “This may give them a little more confidence.”

California’s nursing homes serve about 450,000 residents annually. And although most residents are content being discharged, some don’t feel ready, according to data provided by Chicotel’s organization.


“It’s a very minor burden on the facilities to give residents copies of information that they’re already having to create or document,” Chicotel said. “Now residents have information to see if (the appeal) seems legitimate.”

At the time of publication, the bill had no registered opposition, including from nursing home providers.

The California Association of Health Facilities (CAHF) told Skilled Nursing News that it supports ensuring resident discharge rights are in compliance with laws and regulations. “[This is] so that a resident receives appropriate care in the setting most suited to their needs. Safe, effective, and quality care for residents is a top priority of long-term care providers,” Corey Egel said.

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