The decision to place a loved one in permanent care as they age can be a difficult one to make. Having a family member in a nursing home or assisted living facility comes with the trust and understanding that your loved one will receive the best care possible – not only the best medical care, but also basic care that includes respect.
When injury or elder abuse happens to your loved one while he or she is living at a nursing home or assisted living facility, it can be a confusing, painful time for both you and them. At Karpe Litigation, we pride ourselves on our dedication to advocating for those nursing home residents who are not treated with the proper medical care and respect they deserve.
Warning Signs of Elder Abuse
Unfortunately, a lot can go on behind closed doors, and elder abuse is an increasingly common occurrence. As many as 5,000,000 elders are abused each year, and most likely, only an estimated one in 14 cases is reported. It is important for family members of nursing home residents to be on the lookout for signs of neglect or abuse. Abuse can take many forms, but includes the following warning signs:
- Neglect: Malnourishment, bedsores, poor hygiene, lack of basic necessities like water and food or medical aides
- Frequent injuries: Common trips to the emergency room, unexplained or poorly treated injuries, unexplained bruises, bone breaks, burns, cuts and sores
- Signs of sexual abuse: This includes bruising or blood surrounding the genitals, thighs, or breasts, and unexplained sexually transmitted infection
- Psychological signs: Depressive or withdrawn behavior, signs of fear, anxiety, agitation, disorientation and confusion, wild stories about how an injury occurred
- Financial abuse or exploitation: Withholding of medical care, a lack of amenities the patient can clearly afford or excessive gifts given to caretakers
The Nursing Home Bill of Rights for Residents
Federal and state nursing home regulations entitle those in the care of a nursing home or assisted living facility to certain rights, known as the Nursing Home Bill of Rights. The nursing home entitles residents “the right to a dignified existence, self- determination and communication with and access to the persons and services inside and outside the facility.” Additional rights are identified as fitting under this umbrella ensure residents are safe, respected and allowed access to, and the option to deny, the best medical care. As part of the Nursing Home Bill of Rights, the following rights are ensured to every resident of a nursing home:
- The right to be free from abuse
- The right to be free from physical or chemical restraints
- The right to ownership of personal property
- The right to personal services and accommodations
- The right to share a room with a spouse or the roommate of one’s choice
- The right to make choices about daily life
- The right to access personal medical records
- The right to access information about the outside world
- The right to a safe environment
We want your family member’s life in a nursing home or assisted living facility to be a positive experience, well within the rights established in the Nursing Home Resident Bill of Rights. We know that placing your loved one in the care of another is a difficult decision to make, and we want to help ensure that they are receiving the care and attention they would be getting from a family caretaker.
The nursing home abuse and accident lawyers at Karpe Litigation Group are here to advocate for you and your loved ones in nursing homes to ensure they are treated with the respect and care they deserve. We offer free initial consultations to see how we can best help you to care for your loved ones, and we work on a contingency basis: we only get paid if you and your loved one receive a settlement or win a case.
Contact us today to set up an initial consultation and get you and your family member on the road to a safer lifestyle, free from injury or abuse.