Iowa forms new unit to monitor nursing home abuse

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The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals has formed a new unit to investigate nursing home abuse. The unit is designed to ensure that abuse complaints are addressed quickly and that case information is shared with state licensing boards and criminal investigators, according to local published reports.

According to the state department, the new approach to handling allegations of abuse represents a "more focused" approach to handling such matters. The goal of the new unit is not to punish administrators but to improve the state's response to complaints, officials say.
 
In the past, state officials have responded to abuse cases by fining nursing homes and, in some cases, pursuing criminal charges against the accused caregivers.
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