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For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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Choose a home wisely
By Stephen Nohlgren
Published August 28, 2007
Find a nursing home that's right for you The State of Florida ranks nursing homes on a five-star system, based on inspections. This map locates four- and five-star homes (the top rankings) in your area.
Before you commit to a nursing home choice, do your research.
- Use Florida's star rating system to pick out several possibilities that give good care.
- Focus on locations that make it easy for family and friends to visit. Regular visits and good relations with staff are critical to getting good care.
- Make at least one visit to meet staff, get a tour and ask questions. Try to also make an unannounced visit. Wander around as if you belong there. Are residents dressed and clean? Are there bad smells? Do residents seem happy? Ask residents about the food and social activities. Is the staff interacting with the residents?
Often people need a nursing home in a hurry because a loved one is about to be discharged from the hospital. This can hinder careful selection. Hospital social workers may steer you to nursing homes that don't fit your circumstances.
If you need extra time to find an appropriate home, you can often gain a few days by appealing your hospital discharge. Rules for appealing are found in the "Important Message from Medicare" that should be included in your hospital admission packet. If not, ask hospital employees to give you a copy.
The Center for Medicare Advocacy offers help understanding discharge rights. Consult www.medicareadvocacy.org , then click on "Info by topic," then "Acute Hospital Care."