Studies consistently confirm the prevalence of abuse and neglect at nursing homes across the United States, according to the Center for Justice & Democracy at New York Law School. In one analysis, 1 in 3 older adults in long-term care facilities experienced harm, and staff could have prevented more than half of these instances.
While physical abuse may leave more noticeable signs, neglect often results in silent suffering that can lead to serious health concerns if left unaddressed. If you or your spouse, parent, or another family member suffered complications from dehydration due to neglect in a nursing home, a Fort Worth dehydration lawyer could help you take action against the facility that caused your medical injuries or the loss of your loved one.
Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 842-6336 to talk to our legal team about your options for pursuing compensation in your case.
Dehydration in Nursing Homes
The Mayo Clinic defines dehydration as using or losing more fluid than you take in, which leaves your body without an adequate amount of water for your organs to function properly. Dehydration occurs commonly among nursing home residents, but researchers do not have solid statistics on the issue due to different methods of assessing the condition.
However, they have found that certain circumstances may make older adults in nursing homes more vulnerable to dehydration, such as inadequate staffing and poor supervision. Certain resident characteristics may play a role in the frequency of dehydration, as well, including:
- Dysphagia (trouble swallowing)
- Trouble speaking or an inability to speak at all
- Lack of social support
- Cognitive impairment
- Uncontrolled pain
Regardless of the resident’s condition, nursing home staff members have an obligation under the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 to provide every resident with quality care that protects their health and safety and meets their needs. When they do not abide by federal regulations, residents can suffer from injuries and illnesses for which they can hold the facility accountable.
The Dangers of Dehydration for Older Adults
Healthline notes that dehydration can lead to constipation, kidney problems, electrolyte imbalances, and trouble with balance, among other issues. Older people often have certain risk factors that make them more susceptible to dehydration, such as:
- A lower amount of body fluid
- Decreased thirst response
- A decline in kidney function
- Underlying health conditions
- Certain medications
Nursing homes must ensure the sufficient water intake of residents to prevent dehydration and its complications. If you or a loved one suffered dehydration in a Fort Worth nursing home, Pintas & Mullins Law Firm may be able to help you seek financial recovery. Contact us today to get started on your case with our legal team.
For a free legal consultation with a Dehydration Lawyer serving Texas, call (800) 842-6336
Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration
Dehydration symptoms vary from person to person, and families may find them challenging to spot if they are not familiar with the condition. If you suspect that your loved one suffers from dehydration, signs to watch for include:
- Sunken eyes
- Darker and/or decreased urine
- Muscle cramps
When dehydration reaches more advanced stages, residents may also suffer from confusion, fainting, diarrhea, vomiting, or a rapid heart rate, leading to hypovolemic shock. This potentially fatal condition causes a dangerous drop in blood pressure and oxygen levels and requires immediate medical treatment.
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A Fort Worth Dehydration Lawyer Can Help You Hold the Nursing Home Accountable
Because of the Texas legal system’s complexities, you may find it challenging to file a claim without s lawyer’s assistance. Our attorneys can assist you through each step by investigating your case, establishing liability, and seeking just compensation on your behalf.
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Evidence of Neglect
A lawyer will often begin by collecting relevant evidence in your case from the nursing home and other parties involved as proof that you or your loved one suffered neglect. Some of the types of evidence that may help build your case include:
- Nursing home documentation, such as resident charts, staffing schedules, and surveillance footage
- Medical records and statements from the resident’s health care team
- Statements from other residents and employees who witnessed the neglect
Once they have gathered this information, an attorney can determine the evidence that may prove useful in your case and use it to back your claim.
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The evidence collected in your case can help you and your lawyer prove the nursing home staff’s legal negligence. To do this, you must demonstrate that the facility had a responsibility to protect you or your loved one from preventable harm and that, by breaching this duty, they directly caused your injury or loss and led to the accumulation of your significant damages.
Fighting for a Fair Settlement
After establishing the nursing home’s liability, a lawyer can manage all communications with the facility’s insurance company and legal team to pursue fair financial awards for you. In most cases, our lawyers can use the facts and evidence to negotiate for a fair settlement outside of court. However, if we cannot achieve sufficient compensation, we could represent your case to a jury in court.
Types of Compensation in Nursing Home Abuse Cases
Victims of nursing home abuse and their family members may qualify for financial awards for damages due to nursing home staff negligence. Depending on your case, you could receive compensation for medical and nursing home bills, the cost of your loved one’s funeral and burial, and pain and suffering damages. A Fort Worth dehydration lawyer can help you seek just compensation for your total damages.
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Families who turn to nursing homes expect the staff to ensure their loved ones’ safety, health, and well-being. They expect them to do this by providing quality care that meets federal standards and the resident’s needs. When they fall short of these expectations, residents can suffer severe or even deadly health consequences.
If you or a family member has experienced dehydration’s harmful effects due to neglect in a Fort Worth nursing home, contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 842-6336 to speak with our legal team about your free case evaluation.