Nursing homes care for the most vulnerable segment of the population. The residents and their loved ones depend on the facility to provide the necessary care while respecting the residents’ dignity and humanity. If a resident or family member has a concern, it is wise to call McCready Law for a consultation about your options.
A Beech Grove nursing home abuse lawyer could help ensure a resident is safe and begin the process of holding the facility accountable. A local personal injury attorney could help the resident or their loved ones bring legal action against the facility.
It often falls to loved ones and family members to recognize, report, and stop nursing home neglect and abuse. In some cases, the patient might be so sick they are not conscious and aware for much of the time. Some patients have lost the ability to speak due to a stroke or another health issue. Other nursing home patients have some cognitive impairment and family members might not understand the reason for their loved one’s apparent distress.
Family members of nursing home residents must be diligent in monitoring their loved one’s care. It can sometimes be difficult to distinguish indicators of neglect from the natural effects of aging and disease.
Frequent or unexplained falls might mean that the facility is not using appropriate safeguards when patients have balance or mobility issues. Bedsores are almost always a sign of neglect, as they are easily preventable if the staff moves the resident frequently. Other signals that a patient might be suffering from abuse or neglect include unexplained changes in weight, hygiene issues, moodiness and personality changes, and new prescriptions for sedatives.
If a patient seems unreasonably frightened or agitated without medical explanation, or suffers excessive bruising, cuts, or fractures, a staff member might be physically abusing them. Indicators of sexual abuse include emotional withdrawal, injury to the sexual organs, and a new diagnosis of a sexually transmitted disease.
A loved one who suspects abuse should contact the facility administrator, as well as a Beech Grove attorney with experience in nursing home abuse. Protecting the patient must be the priority and sometimes a legal professional will advise involving law enforcement to initiate a criminal investigation.
Nursing homes residents and their loved ones have several options to stop nursing home abuse and neglect. The first step should always be to bring the concerns to the attention of the nursing home administrator in writing. If the response is not timely or does not solve the problem, it is wise to bring the nursing home abuse concerns to a Beech Grove attorney.
People with concerns about the conditions at a nursing home or long-term care facility, or the quality of the care it provides, should file a confidential complaint with the Indiana Department of Health. Residents or their family members could also file a complaint with the Long-Term Care Ombudsman. These complaints are confidential. The Department of Health could conduct an unannounced inspection to investigate a complaint, and the result could impact the facility’s licensing status and public report card. The Ombudsman attempts to resolve the situation by addressing the resident’s needs and ensuring the situation will not reoccur.
Filing a lawsuit alleging nursing home neglect or abuse is sometimes the appropriate step. Doing so provides compensation for the mistreatment and forces the nursing home to reckon with deficiencies in the care it provides. Indiana Code § 34-11-2-4 requires a resident or their representative to file a lawsuit within two years of the injury.
A resident could claim compensation for the cost of medical care to treat the condition or injury that resulted from the neglect or abuse. That includes reimbursement for the cost of medically necessary treatment such as surgery, rehabilitation, counseling, pharmacy expenses, and medical equipment. Incidental expenses such as transportation costs could be included in damages. A resident who suffered neglect or abuse could also demand compensation for the pain and suffering they experienced due to deficient care.
Nursing home neglect and abuse is widespread but often goes undetected. When you believe your loved one is suffering from poor care in a long-term care facility, you owe it to them to act.
Contact a Beech Grove nursing home abuse lawyer immediately. Together, you could improve your loved one’s quality of life and hold the facility accountable. Call our team today.