Nursing Home Neglect/Abuse
In the United States today, there are over forty-four million people above the age of 60. According to statistics, many will need some form of assisted living, whether it is a nursing home, assisted living facility or other elderly facility. Due to the fact that long-term care for the elderly is typically extremely expensive (well over $5,000 per month in many jurisdictions), the vast majority of residents go through most, if not all, of their assets in a matter of months and then become eligible for federal Medicaid benefits. These benefits cover over 90% of the costs for nursing home residents. As such, almost all nursing home facilities receive Medicaid funds.
Do I Have a Nursing Abuse Case?
There are several common types of injuries that are suffered as a result of recurrent neglect, including:
- Aspiration pneumonia
- Theft of money and personal property
- Unexpected or wrongful death
- Unsanitary conditions
- Untrained or insufficient staff
- Substandard medical care
- Poor personal hygiene
- Defective equipment
- Sexual assault
- Physical Abuse
- Falls and fractures
- Physical or chemical restraints
- Malnutrition or dehydration
- Improper, wrong or over-medication
- Bed sores
- Lack of supervision (allowing residents to wander away from the facility)
- Physical abuse or unexplained injury
- Weight gain or loss
- Septic shock
The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act or “OBRA”, 42 USCA 1396 et seq. and 1395 et seq., is a Federal guideline that spells out how nursing homes are ultimately responsible for the health, medical care and well-being of their residents. A federal bureau known as the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) oversees compliance with these regulations. The HCFA enforces guidelines for the evaluation, care and treatment of residents, aimed at maximizing the quality of each resident’s daily life and minimizing abuse and neglect. If substantial compliance is shown, certification of the home is continued and the home can continue to receive government funds such as Medicare/Medicaid. If not, the home may lose its ability to receive these benefits.
What can I do?
Before proceeding with litigation, a review of the medical records by a professional is critical. All available family members, friends and witnesses should be interviewed to determine if there is any additional information regarding the elder’s treatment or documents to assist in evaluation. Because most victims in nursing home cases are long past the stage of earning wages and often have short life spans, analysis of these cases is are different. Important factors which may impact the amount of damages that may be recovered include the egregiousness of the nursing home’s conduct, whether a pattern of neglect can be shown and/or whether injuries from the nursing home’s negligence can be distinguished from the resident’s existing disease process.
Attorneys forcing these institutions to treat their residents properly is the only way the quality of care for all residents be assured.
If you feel that you or a loved one have been victimized by neglect, abuse and/or medical malpractice while in the care of a senior citizen facility, please contact Fiore & Barber, LLC at 215-256-0205 or via email. Our initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to accept your case, we will work on a contingent fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary award or recovery of funds on your behalf. You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be filed before the statute of limitations expires.
Please contact Fiore & Barber, LLC at 215-256-0205 or via email. Our initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to accept your case, we will work on a contingent fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary award or recovery of funds on your behalf. You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
Disclaimer: The material contained on this website is afforded for information purposes only. The materials do not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship.