Our population is getting older every day, and there is an increasing need to rely on institutions to care for our elderly loved ones. As a result, millions of Americans live in a nursing home or long-term care facility, and every year thousands of people are injured, exploited or maltreated as a result of nursing home abuse and neglect. We exist to hold nursing homes accountable for harm done to our loved ones.
Abuse vs. Neglect
Vulnerable adults, including the elderly who have entrusted their care to a nursing home, are afforded protection under the law. Unfortunately, there are those who care for the vulnerable that commit horrible acts against them during the course of their duties. While it is uncommon, a resident may suffer direct physical abuse, emotional abuse or even sexual abuse from a member of the facility staff.
It is an unfortunate fact that many facilities are so understaffed that staff and administration are simply unable to provide the level of care the law dictates they adhere to. They are simply not equipped to avoid all harm, and most of the time are not equipped to provide sufficient care. Poor building maintenance, transportation negligence, and outright neglect are sad results of poorly trained, motivated and sometimes insufficiently numbered staff. Many mistakes made that result in harm to vulnerable loved ones are completely avoidable.
Common Signs of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
- Complaints of abuse from the resident
- Unexplained or unreasonable physical restraint
- Unexplained and sudden change in personality of the resident
- Malnutrition and dehydration evident
- Complaint of misadministration of medication
- Unsanitary conditions
- Bed sores
- Fractured hips and arms
- Hospital and emergency room visits made under suspicious conditions
- Unusual activity from financial accounts
What You Should Do if You Suspect Abuse or Neglect
Ask questions – If a loved one has been injured, you should ask what, how and why it happened. You have the right to ask nursing home administrators these questions as well.
Take video and photo evidence – Documenting the injury sometimes circumvents a complete lack of mention that is all too present in nursing home chart notes. These photos are crucial in providing evidence of harm.
Get documentation – Any time a resident in a nursing home is injured, whether it be from abuse, neglect, or in the course of ordinary care, the staff is required to document it. Ask to see the documentation or copies of the paperwork. If the facility cannot or will not respond to questions about an incident, this is a huge red flag and should be addressed immediately.
Call an experienced Nursing home abuse and neglect attorney now – If someone you love has been hurt due to being abused or cared for negligently, you should call a personal injury lawyer for a free case review.
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Our Seattle, Tacoma, Everett and Bremerton Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect attorneys are dedicated to maximizing your recovery in such disheartening claims. Call Washington’s Law Firm at 844-486-9797 for a free case review. This is completely free and no obligation- if we don’t get paid, you don’t get paid.