Background Checks for Illinois Nursing Home Residents

Background Checks for Illinois Nursing Home Residents
By:  Wendy Ray

Nursing home residents and back ground checks don't seem to go hand in hand, but they do now in Illinois. All nursing home residents in the state are required to be checked against the State Department of Corrections and the sex offender websites. All background checks had to be completed by July 21st. A southern Illinois nursing home representative we spoke with Tuesday supports these background checks, and she isn't alone.

"We need to be able to let our residents, our residents' families, and our community know if we have someone in our facility," spokesperson Nancy Lare says. Lare thinks it's great background checks are now required for all Illinois nursing home residents. Lare is the spokesperson for ABS management which owns six homes in southern Illinois, including the City Care Center of Anna. She says ABS was proactive in getting everyone screened and residents didn't seem to mind. "A lot of them of course would never have thought this was something they would have to think about when going into a long care facility, so there were quite a few when we explained it to them who thought it was an excellent idea," Lare says. "It's made them feel better in their surroundings."
Lare says the checks are not an inconvenience to residents because administrators already have the information they need to run the checks. As we soon found out, nursing home personnel and residents aren't the only ones in support of this measure. "Well I say it's not a bad idea. There's been a lot of assaults in nursing homes. I don't see what it will hurt," Anna resident Dee Langfort says. "Of all the people in the world that need protection it's the people in nursing homes," Anna resident Margaret Smith says.
Lare says the background checks were done online, but a proposal is in the works to require a formal form by the Illinois State Police. The formal forms would cost fifty dollars per resident. Nursing home workers were already required to have background checks.