Older adults have more healthcare, support, and long-term service needs compared with the younger population. While family members and friends can address their care needs, in time, the elderly grow to need more support than their family or friends can handle. At this point, families make the difficult decision to move their loved one to a nursing home. Here, they expect their loved ones to receive the skilled nursing care and continuous support they need to live a wholesome life.
Sometimes, however, nursing homes neglect or ignore their responsibilities, causing your loved one to suffer a reduced quality of life. They may have an accident that could have been prevented had the staff been doing their jobs, resulting in injuries of varying severity.
If your loved one suffered an injury in a nursing home accident, you may be entitled to compensation for the resultant losses. At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, our Louisville nursing home accident lawyer team is ready to fight for your rights and pursue justice on your behalf. Reach out to us by calling (800) 842-6336 for your free, confidential, and no-obligation case review consultation today.
Types of Nursing Home Accidents in Louisville that Your Loved One May Have Experienced
According to the National Council on Aging (NCOA), over 80% of older adults (above 60 years) have at least one chronic disease; 77% have two or more. Add to this the deterioration of physical and mental capabilities among older adults, and it is easy to see why many need long-term care and support.
Nursing homes have a duty to provide this care and support in a safe and comfortable environment. They also have a duty to protect residents from foreseeable harm or injury. However, if caregivers fail to provide the care or supervision necessary, elderly residents may become victims of avoidable accidents leading to injury.
Examples of accidents that can happen to elderly residents in nursing homes include:
Slip and Falls
Falls can be devastating for older adults whose bones are quite fragile. They can lead to lifelong disability, depending on severity. Slip and falls may occur due to inadequate supervision, improper cleaning protocols, or failure to assist a resident, forcing them to fend for themselves.
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If a resident needs help with eating or drinking, they should not be allowed to eat/drink alone. They may choke and be unable to dislodge the food, leading to asphyxia, respiratory complications, and even death.
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Elderly residents who can still move are given the opportunity to engage in light exercise. However, this should be done under supervision and limited to activities that do not carry the risk of injury.
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With impaired cognitive function or vision, residents probably need help taking medication. They should not have access to this medication to prevent risks of overdose.
Other accidents include improper or late diagnosis of medical conditions, wandering and elopement, and allergic reactions. It is critical for a resident’s loved ones to investigate and determine the cause of every accident their family members suffer.
You may begin by making a formal complaint to the nursing home management. Should this fail, you may want to consult a nursing home accident lawyer who handles nursing home accidents. Our personal injury lawyers can help you get to the bottom of any suspected case of nursing home negligence or abuse. We will also initiate legal action on your behalf to hold the wrongdoers accountable for their negligence or actions.
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Signs of Negligent Activity in a Nursing Home
It is crucial to know the signs of nursing home abuse or neglect and of accidents that may injure your loved one. You should be concerned about any unexplainable and sudden, negative changes in your loved one’s physical appearance, demeanor, personality, or emotional state.
Signs to watch out for include:
- Unexplained cuts, bruises, or lacerations
- Sudden changes in mobility, e.g., using a cane or wheelchair
- Bone fractures and casts
- Unkempt appearance
- Unexplained infections, medical conditions, or hospitalization
- Head/neck/spinal injuries
- Unexplained confinement
- Broken dentures, eyeglasses, or other assistive devices
- Sudden death
- Sudden weight loss
There are many other signs of neglect and abuse. In general, you should always investigate or make a complaint if you notice any unexplained changes in your loved one’s behavior, personality, or appearance. There could be a simple explanation, or your loved one could have been the victim of neglect or abuse. For complex matters, enlist the counsel of an attorney.
We Will Search for Evidence of Liability for Your Loved One’s Nursing Home Accident
Making a report to the administration about an accident is only the first step in a lengthy process of getting justice for your loved one. Nursing homes have lawyers whose job is to protect the interests of the owners/administrators. They may fight you by delaying or even denying any claims or complaints you bring. If you have a case, they will try to push you to settle for much less than you deserve.
This is why it is critical to speak to a personal injury lawyer who handles nursing home neglect and abuse claims. He/she will help you investigate and make a compelling case, whether for negotiation and out-of-court settlement, arbitration, or litigation.
That said, it is critical to remember that Kentucky Revised Statutes (KRS) §413.140 imposes a statute of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death claims of one year from the date of the incident/accident. Other statutes may apply, depending on your case’s circumstances. Reach out to a lawyer early to ensure you have adequate time to gather evidence and build a strong case.
How a Louisville Nursing Home Accident Lawyer from Our Firm Can Help
Proving liability for personal injury cases involving nursing home accidents is no walk in the park. Often, nursing homes will try to hide evidence or dispute the accounts of your loved one to subvert justice. It gets even more complex if your loved one has impaired physical or cognitive functions, making them unable to speak out for themselves.
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, however, we have the requisite knowledge and resources to handle even the most difficult claims related to nursing home neglect and abuse. We have represented many clients and helped them to get justice for their loved ones’ injuries.
Remember, you have a very limited time to make a claim against the person/facility that hurt your loved one. Reach out promptly at (800) 842-6336 for your free and confidential case review consultation with a representative from our team.