A New Jersey family struck a win for the rights of nursing home residents who are hard of hearing.
According to an article on BurlingtonCountyTimes.com, Medford Care Center in Medford, NJ will now provide a sign-language interpreter for those residents who are deaf or hard of hearing.
In 2012, the family of a deaf patient filed a complaint against the center, alleging that the woman was not made aware of medical procedures because of the lack of adequate communication. The the complaint, the family said the center provided a sign-language interpreter for only two conferences with doctors. At other times, the center communicated with the woman through her son, by way of written notes, or by lip reading.
In the article, the U.S. attorney general’s office said, “Patients who are deaf or hard of hearing must be able to comfortably, and effectively, communicate with their caregivers.” As part of a settlement agreement, Medford Care Center will provide sign-language interpreters upon request.
The U.S. attorney general’s office hopes the case will act as “a reminder to other health care facilities that they have the same duty to provide effective communication under the law.”