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Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan
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June 24, 2010

ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN: LATEST OPERATION GUARDIAN COMPLIANCE CHECK CONDUCTED TODAY IN EAST ST. LOUIS

Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced that an “Operation Guardian” compliance check took place earlier today in East St. Louis. St. Clair County Sheriff Mearl Justus joined Madigan at a noon press conference to discuss the results of the compliance check of Virgil Calvert Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 5050 Summit Ave.

“When I announced Operation Guardian, I put nursing home operators on notice that a team of state agencies will make unannounced visits to ensure that our elderly family members and friends who reside at these facilities are cared for in a safe environment,” Madigan said.

Madigan’s office was joined by the Illinois State Police, the Illinois Departments of Public Health and Financial and Professional Regulation and the Illinois Department on Aging’s Long Term Care Ombudsman Program at today’s compliance check.

“Each agency that participates in the compliance checks has a specific role to play in ensuring the safety of the vulnerable residents of Illinois nursing homes,” continued Madigan.

“I am most supportive of this effort to increase the safety of our loved ones who reside in these facilities. I applaud Attorney General Madigan for taking the lead in this effort and I offer any assistance she may need,” said Sheriff Justus.

This was the twelfth compliance check conducted since Attorney General Madigan announced her office’s Operation Guardian initiative to protect Illinois’ nursing home residents. The multi-agency visits give her office and other participating state agencies the opportunity to review safety and compliance issues at nursing homes. For example, nursing home operators who fail to identify fugitives living at their facility are in violation of state law. The Department on Aging’s Long Term Care Ombudsman Program ensures that residents’ rights are not being violated with the goal of enhancing their quality of life. The Department of Public Health’s role is a compliance review of any identified offenders and any reported incidents in the last six months. The Department of Financial and Professional Regulation interviews administrators and performs a license check of all professionals employed at the nursing facility.

Attorney General Madigan announced the formation of “Operation Guardian” last February and it follows her work to close Emerald Park Nursing Home and to require background checks and criminal history analyses to identify nursing home residents that might pose a threat to others.

The Attorney General also authored a law, known as the Resident’s Right to Know Act that requires nursing homes to complete an annual Consumer Choice Information Report about facilities’ standard of care, service and security issues to provide better information to residents and their families.

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