Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
When we turn the care of our parents or grandparents over to a nursing home, we expect they will be taken care of with respect and dignity. What most people don’t know is that there are over 2 million nursing home abuse cases reported every year and 1 in 10 elderly experience nursing home abuse according to the National Center on Elder Abuse. Elder abuse can take many different forms and can go unrecognized. It can take working with a nursing home abuse attorney to get answers and resolution.
Only 1 in 14 cases of elder abuse are reported and elders who have been abused have a 300% higher risk of death than those that haven’t. More than 40% of nursing home residents have reported abuse and more than 90% report that they or another resident of the facility have been neglected. Nursing home abuse isn’t the only kind of elder care related abuse, however, and home health caretakers can also commit elder abuse.
The elderly are the least likely to report this abuse for a number of reasons and it is often discovered when a family member visits and notices something is wrong. If your loved one may have suffered nursing home abuse or home health care abuse, you may have an elderly abuse case against the nursing facility or home health agency.
Nursing home abuse cases can be filed when your loved one experienced abuse. A nursing home abuse lawyer may be able to help you make your claim against the medical professionals and nursing home staff who caused the abuse. A lawyer may be able to help with your nursing home abuse case to help you hold those accountable who caused the harm.
Nursing Home Abuse Signs
Did your loved one show any of these signs of nursing home abuse or nursing home neglect?
The signs of nursing home abuse vary widely but can often take different forms. Although you might think about nursing home abuse as physical abuse, there are lots of different ways a nursing home resident can be abused.
In the United States, an overwhelming number of nursing home abuse cases go unreported. If a family member was a victim, holding the person or company responsible and demanding an apology and compensation may be done with a nursing home abuse lawsuit. Recognizing the signs of nursing home abuse are critical to ensuring your loved one is safe in a nursing home or with a home health caregiver.
Listed below are the most common signs of nursing home abuse, but there are others that happen that aren’t included. Nursing home abuse can take many forms so don’t hesitate to contact Emerson Firm, PLLC if you believe elder abuse happened to you or a loved one.
- Bed sores – These are generally a sign of neglect and are caused by damage to the upper epidermis through extended periods of sitting or lying down. They most commonly affect the hips, pelvic area, buttocks, lower back, and tailbone. They can also appear on the ankles and feet due to shoes and medical devices such as wheelchair restraints not being removed often enough.
- Losing weight and Dehydration– Malnutrition is another common sign of nursing home neglect. While many family members are quick to assume it is because the food quality is low in nursing homes, severe malnutrition can be caused by nursing home neglect.
- Looking generally unkempt – Nursing homes are required to maintain the hygiene of their residents through regular clothing changes, bathing, and regular personal hygiene practices. A sudden change in the appearance of your loved ones can be a sign of nursing home neglect.
- Unexplained injuries or traumas – Nursing home falls are usually given as explanations of injuries or traumas, but when injuries don’t correspond to common injuries from falls, it should serve as a red flag that nursing home abuse may be occurring.
- Urinary tract infections – UTIs can be caused by infrequent diaper changes for residents with incontinence issues and other similar neglect.
Infections – Sudden infections unrelated to medical procedures can be caused by unsanitary conditions in nursing homes as well as insufficient care.
- Missed medications and over medicating – Missed dosages can have adverse effects and are often a sign of nurses neglecting their duties. Some nursing homes over medicate residents unnecessarily to sedate them and make them “easier to handle.”
- Injuries from bedrails or restraints – Injuries from medical devices used to restrain residents in nursing homes can be deadly, especially bed rails that can constrict a resident who has fallen between the mattress and metal rail around their bed. Neglect in situations like this can cause death or severe injury.
- Change in behavior or not wanting to talk about certain staff members – These both can be signs of emotional, verbal and sexual abuse in nursing homes.
- Sudden changes in financial situation or legacy – Financial abuse in nursing homes is less common and is more likely to occur in home health situations. If a change in financial situation occurs or possessions go missing, it can be a sign of financial elder abuse.
- Bruises on privates or breasts – Women in nursing homes are more likely to be sexually abused and signs of sexual abuse include bruising, pain or bleeding from privates.
How can I prove Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect?
If you’re thinking about pursuing legal action, it’s important to understand the parts that make up a nursing home abuse or neglect claim. These parts of a claim are necessary to bring a robust case against medical professionals and hospitals but an attorney may be able to help you figure these things out.
The most important part of a nursing home abuse or neglect case is documenting evidence of the abuse, both in nursing home records as well as on your own. An attorney can help you get the appropriate paper trail together to prove nursing home abuse, statements from staff at the nursing home, and expert opinions that can help prove your case.
Getting together all of these pieces of an elder abuse claim not only takes time but often takes knowledge of how skilled nursing facilities, elder care services and home health care work and what they do to prevent claims. It’s in their best interests to make it difficult for residents, patients, their families and discourage people from pursuing claims. However, the law is clear and is on the side of families who can prove all of the parts of a nursing home neglect or abuse claim.
A nursing home abuse lawyer may be able to help you make your claim. Our nursing home neglect law firm offers free initial consultations at no charge to learn about your cause and see if we can help you pursue damages.
If you believe that you or a loved one is a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, contact our elder abuse law firm today to speak with one of our experienced attorneys. Don’t let nursing homes and elder care services take advantage of their position and don’t allow them to continue abusive practices. Hold those accountable who caused the abuse or neglect. Call Emerson Firm, PLLC.
Our Nursing Home Abuse Law Firm – Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers Fighting for Patient Rights
Emerson Firm, PLLC has extensive experience defending patient rights, both in cases of nursing home abuse as well as cases of medical device and medication injuries. We believe in the protections of the law and hold doctors, medical staff and hospitals accountable when they’ve harmed patients and their families because of abuse or neglect.
We know our role as nursing home abuse lawyers is to ensure that the voice of patients and their families are heard. Our mission is to fight to uphold protections that keep nursing home residents safe and well cared for. Our nursing home neglect legal team knows the ins and outs of what it takes from experience. We’re also recognized as leaders in the legal industry from various legal communities.