Can I File a Lawsuit for Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect?
When families entrust the health and safety of a loved one to a long-term care facility, nursing home abuse and neglect are usually the furthest things from their minds. Sadly, some statistics show that dangerous violations in care occur in more than a third of nursing homes across the United States. At Eisenberg, Rothweiler, Winkler, Eisenberg & Jeck, P.C., our nursing home neglect attorneys have the experience and resources necessary to investigate claims of elder abuse. We can examine your loved one’s living condition and medical records as well as discover any prior history of neglect at the facility in question. We can assist you in recovering the cost of your loved one’s medical care, pain and suffering and more.
What is the Cause of Nursing Home Neglect?
Nursing homes are governed by state and federal guidelines concerning the care and treatment of residents. However, financial pressures may tempt some elder care facilities to cut costs by cutting corners, such as not hiring enough staff members to properly monitor residents. Understaffing, poor pay and overwork can result in a high rate of turnover among nursing home employees as well. Some common examples of nursing home negligence that can harm residents include:
- Poor hiring practices, including understaffing and hiring unqualified personnel. This may include failure to perform background checks.
- Lack of adequate training for staff. Elder care facilities are responsible for training staff members in the care and treatment of residents.
- Lack of patient supervision. Many residents of elder care homes require assistance with daily tasks, and sometimes need constant supervision to prevent dangerous falls and other accidents. Understaffing and poor staff training can contribute to this problem.
- Failure to provide adequate security. Proper security protects residents from outside dangers, such as unauthorized visitors, and also prevents patients from wandering off the premises.
- Medical negligence. Nursing home staff must treat patients’ injuries and conditions or arrange for emergency treatment. This includes providing medication in a timely, regular manner. Otherwise, serious injuries and illnesses may occur or worsen.
In spite of pressures such as understaffing, there is never any excuse for nursing home abuse or neglect. Victims of such negligence and their families can typically hold the care facility accountable for their injuries and other damages. In some cases, other third parties may also share responsibility for a nursing home accident and/or injury.
What are the Warning Signs of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect?
Nursing home negligence can take many forms and is not always easy to spot. Unfortunately, nursing home employees and the residents themselves are unlikely to report elder abuse. Therefore, it often falls to family members to stay alert for the signs and symptoms of abuse and neglect and to protect their loved one. Some of the most common signs of nursing home neglect include:
- Bedsores (pressure sores, decubitus ulcers).
- Restraint injuries, such as bruising around the wrists and ankles.
- Slip and fall injuries, such as broken bones and extensive bruising.
- Medication errors, which may allow a resident’s condition to worsen or cause additional injuries.
- Malnutrition, evidenced by unhealthy weight loss.
- Financial abuse and property theft, which may be indicated by sudden withdrawals from your loved one’s bank account or even changes in his or her will.
- Silence or frightened behavior around nursing home staff.
- Emotional detachment.
- Illness and/or infection, especially if the condition persists.
- Poor hygiene or dirty clothes.
If you suspect elder abuse and/or neglect is affecting your loved one, then contact a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney from our firm today. First, a lawyer will help you to remove the victim from harm as quickly as possible. Then, we can conduct a thorough investigation of the injury to determine the cause and identify liable parties.
Suspect Nursing Home Negligence? Call Our Pennsylvania Law Firm for a Free Consultation
If you suspect that your loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, we are here to help. Contact our law firm right away to speak with a knowledgeable nursing home abuse attorney.
We have offices in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Cherry Hill, New Jersey, but we accept cases nationwide. Our attorneys offer free consultations and contingency fee arrangements so that you pay nothing unless we successfully resolve your claim.