You’ve discovered that a loved one is being neglected or abused in the very facility that is paid to provide them with excellent care. You are likely wondering:
Our team of personal injury lawyers is here to answer your questions and provide support during this stressful time.
Nursing homes exist to provide going care to the elderly who need it the most. Remarkably, those with family members in a nursing home like to believe that their loved one is receiving the best care possible but frequently that’s not the case. Every year, thousands of nursing home residents are abused and neglected.
When the same nursing homes that are supposed to be watching over our loved ones in fact cause them distress, pain, and terror, the civil justice system allows victims to fight back. By filing a claim for elder abuse, the facilities and staff can be held liable for their wrongdoings. Even in instances when nursing homes attempt to place the blame solely on “bad apple” employees, they can still be held responsible.
Trust that the Justice Guardians team will stand by your side and fight exactly for that – the justice that you and your loved ones deserve.
Thanks to the advances that have been made in medicine, Americans are living longer than ever before but often, due to age and various medical conditions, the elderly need help caring for themselves.
For some, this might mean assistance with everyday tasks like grocery shopping and cleaning, but others need ongoing intensive care including help with feeding, bathing, and medical treatments. When the necessary care is not provided by facilities for elders, medical complications can develop or worsen.
The abuse and neglect that may take place in nursing homes can manifest in varied and numerous ways. Next, we discuss some of the most common ones in some detail:
Good hygiene isn’t just about looking and smelling good, it’s also about preventing infections and illness. Often, it’s not just the residents who aren’t being treated properly, when observed, around 88% of nursing home caregivers failed to properly wash their hands prior to touching patients.
As we age the body sometimes isn’t able to balance as well as it did previously, which means that the elderly are more likely to trip and fall. Falls can easily break bones, cause brain damage, or even kill a patient which is why any patient who is unsteady should have the assistance they need.
Bedsores occur when an area of the body is constantly under pressure or has constant friction. Essentially, this means that a bedridden patient isn’t being moved enough and their body has created a skin lesion. While this might not seem like a big deal, bedsores can actually be quite dangerous. There are four stages of bedsores:
The bottom line is that with proper care, bedsores shouldn’t happen.
Many nursing home residents require assistance because they suffer from medical conditions like Alzheimer’s and dementia, which can affect their memory and cause disorientation and confusion. Patients frequently wander and without knowing it can put themselves in extreme danger. This is why nursing homes should use bed and chair alarms, maintain proper staffing, and use window and door locks so that patients can be monitored and kept safe.
When a resident is unable to feed themselves they rely on staff to make sure they are eating and drinking enough. If they aren’t receiving the proper nutrition, a family member may notice:
Medical malpractice occurs when a patient doesn’t receive the accepted standard of care. For nursing home residents, this often includes prescription errors such as over-medicating, failing to medicate, and the mixing of drugs which results in a life-threatening drug reaction.
Although shocking, nursing home staff frequently take advantage of the weakened state of patients and physically and sexually abuse them. Rape, sexual assault, and being beaten are just a few examples of the horrific crimes committed against the elderly. Victims of these crimes are often too embarrassed to speak up so it’s important for family members to pay close attention and take note of any signs that abuse may be occurring, such as unexplainable cuts and bruises, or the fear of being left alone with a certain staff member.
If you suspect your loved one is in immediate physical danger, it’s best to remove them from that situation and if necessary, call the police.
Then, you should speak with an attorney. While you might feel the need to confront the nursing home staff, doing this might cause them to try and cover up any issues and may result in evidence, such as medical records, being “lost”.
Our experienced attorneys will review your case and determine how best to proceed. In many cases, it is possible to pursue a nursing home lawsuit that will provide you and your loved one with compensation which can help to get them the care that they so desperately need.
Every state has laws that dictate how long a plaintiff has to file a lawsuit. In Pennsylvania, nursing home lawsuits must be filed within two years of the date that the abuse or negligence occurred. However, if the lawsuit is addressing medical malpractice, that two-year ‘countdown’ begins from the date that the plaintiff became aware that a medical professional’s actions caused them harm.
These time limits are an excellent reason to call an attorney as quickly as possible. Once the allotted time has passed, a plaintiff will no longer have the option of recovering compensation.
For more information regarding the cases handled by our law firm, visit the following page: Medical Malpractice Lawyers Serving Pennsylvania Patients