Fort Pierce Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers
When our elderly parents or loved ones need assistance with daily tasks, or have medical conditions that require special monitoring, entering a nursing home may be a well-intentioned and necessary option; however, as the demand for nursing home care has increased, so has the amount of nursing home abuse and neglect cases. According to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), one-third of all nursing homes in the United States have been cited for violations, with those suffering from dementia at greater risk than those without.
For many Florida families, the decision to place a loved one in a nursing home is indeed difficult. Unprofessional caretakers, poor training, insufficient staff, and income prioritization are principal causes of elderly abuse. When facility conditions deteriorate, the quality of life for its residents also suffers.
If you are concerned or have been subjected to nursing home abuse and neglect, contact a seasoned nursing home abuse and neglect attorney for a free consultation. Safeguard your dignity and your rights – take the first steps toward ending elderly abuse.
Recognizing Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Victims of nursing home abuse and neglect experience something called “hidden crimes,” as the nature of the abuse and neglect may be difficult, if not impossible, to recognize. The Shiner Law Group provides a list of telltale signs that indicate abuse and neglect are present:
- Pressure ulcers (bed sores).
- Sudden and unexplained weight loss.
- Unusual changes in behavior or emotional withdrawal.
- Lack of personal hygiene, such as soiled clothes or body odor.
- Unexplained bruises, bleeding abrasions, diseases, or infections.
- Fall-related injuries.
- Muted demeanor around nursing home personnel.
- Malnutrition or dehydration.
- Sexual abuse.
- Changes in the elder’s will or power of attorney.
- Sudden financial hardship or bills left unpaid.
Although abuse may constitute the most egregious form of maltreatment, serious neglect can ultimately be life threatening. When a loved one enters a nursing home, the facility is obligated to meet his or her basic medical and social needs; however, residents may be limited in their ability to communicate signs of abuse and neglect out of fear of retribution.
If you suspect abuse and/or neglect is occurring, take your loved one to a safe environment and inquire further. Record detailed accounts and all relevant information associated with the incident. Contact the nursing home administration, the appropriate authorities, and seek immediate legal counsel.
How a Shiner Law Group Attorney Can Help
An increase in nursing home lawsuits in recent years has prompted facilities to anticipate—and prepare for—litigation, meaning facilities may have established practices to mitigate the risk of liability (falsifying records, overstaffing during state inspections, etc.). Successfully executing a nursing home abuse and neglect claim involves complex legal maneuvering that requires an experienced attorney to represent the best interests of an abused or neglected nursing home resident.
Our Fort Pierce nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys have proven experience with the nursing home industry’s practices, and we have provided a few examples in which our team can help:
- Investigate the improper conduct.
- Evaluate potential settlements.
- Provide knowledge of nursing home regulations and standard industry practices.
- Build a compelling case by working with a network of relevant experts.
- Navigate insurance company traps.
- Take on nursing home chains.
Nursing home personnel may dispute personal injury claims by attributing physical or mental deterioration to the aging process or preexisting health conditions. Nevertheless, we are committed to protecting vulnerable residents and holding those who inflict physical and emotional harm responsible.
Families and caretakers can reduce the risk of nursing home abuse and neglect by making frequent and unannounced visits, speaking with staff and other residents, and ensuring your loved one has proper access to food, water, hygiene, and a safe and clean environment.