Sen. Danny Carroll, R-Paducah, District 2, has introduced Senate Bill 150, directed at attorneys that advertise deficiencies in inspections of long-term health care facilities.
These are the ads published through the state, usually by out-of-state law firms, seeking clients of nursing facilities to join in class action suits. The ads use results of an investigation or inspection of a health care facility.
Some newspapers have refused to publish the ads because the health care facility is an advertiser itself or the newspaper realizes the inspections reported may not be as serious as the ad implicates.
While SB 150 doesn’t not prohibit the advertisements, it will require the advertiser to include more information than has been required in the past. However, there are no penalties included in the legislation should the law firm not include this information.
Senator Carroll’s bill, if passed by both chambers, would require:
(a) The date the survey, inspection, or investigation was conducted;
(b) A statement that a facility is required to submit a plan of correction in response to a statement of deficiencies, if applicable;
(c) If a finding or deficiency cited in the statement of deficiencies has been corrected, a statement that the finding or deficiency has been corrected and the date that the finding or deficiency was corrected; and
(d) A statement that the advertisement publication is not authorized or endorsed by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, Office of Inspector General, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or any other government agency.
There is no threat to a newspaper or other publication for publishing such an ad and the newspaper would not be required to ensure the additional statements are included in any ad.