You left your loved one at a nursing home so they can be healthy and safe. However, there still exists the possibility of abuse. You may be afraid they are suffering from physical harm, neglect, and malnutrition. If you suspect that a loved one may have suffered while in the care of a nursing home, a Nashville malnutrition lawyer might be able to help.
Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today at (800) 842-6336.
Malnutrition Can Be a Serious Problem
The elderly can be more vulnerable, both physically and emotionally. This makes it crucial to have the proper nutrition to have a healthy immune system and live a healthy life.
Malnutrition Can Be a Case of Negligence
Malnutrition is a form of neglect as it fails to provide the reasonable care a resident can expect. It does not matter whether the failure to provide adequate nutrition was unintentional or out of malice. Even inaction is considered negligence and may be a criminal offense.
Malnutrition is a leading form of negligence in nursing homes. Older people need vitamins and minerals to meet their bodies’ demands every day. If their diet at a nursing home does not contain these nutrients in sufficient quantities, they can become weak and malnourished. This condition often leads to more serious health problems over time.
For a free legal consultation with a Nashville Malnutrition Lawyer serving Nashville, call (800) 794-0444
Causes of Malnutrition in a Nursing Home
Several circumstances can cause your loved one to develop malnutrition. For one, the caregivers may be giving them the wrong serving sizes. This situation means the nursing staff is not providing the residents with their proper nutritional intake.
Another reason could be dental problems, which may make it difficult for residents to eat certain foods.
Malnutrition can also come with their age, where they suffer from poor oral health and difficulty swallowing called dysphagia. Another possible reason behind malnutrition is that it is a side effect of a patient’s medication. Illnesses such as malabsorption syndrome or cancer can cause problems with nutrition.
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Common Signs of Malnutrition
There are many reasons that malnutrition can occur at a nursing home. However, no reason is a valid excuse or avoids legal repercussions. No matter the reason, it is considered negligence and abuse to have a resident end up malnourished or dehydrated while in the care of a nursing home. On that note, it is vital to keep an eye on your loved one for signs of malnutrition that, according to MedlinePlus, can include:
- Loss of fat
- Hair loss or thinning hair
- Apathy, tiredness, or fatigue
- Prolonged healing time
- Reduced muscle tissue
- Breathing difficulties
- Dry mouth
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The Legal Responsibility of a Nursing Home
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) says that a nursing home’s responsibilities include providing a nutritional diet to its patients. This aspect includes tailoring meals for those who struggle with their health because of certain medical conditions or other concerns.
Families make the difficult decision to let their loved ones stay at nursing homes so that someone can provide the care they need. Nursing homes can only do that by keeping updated patient files for every patient, including their dietary needs and risks. It is, therefore, also their task to accommodate the patient’s nutritional needs.
If the patient has dental problems, taking care of that is part of the job of a nursing home. If one has difficulty swallowing, cutting meals into smaller pieces might suffice. The best and most reliable nursing homes provide this level of care. With that said, your loved one would not have been malnourished if they received proper care and attention.
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What to Do in a Nursing Home Malnourishment Case
As a resident of a nursing home, your loved one has a right to receive care that also applies to their dietary needs. As you probably know, malnutrition does not happen overnight. It means the caregiver or nursing staff must have been neglecting your loved one over a prolonged time.
If you find your loved one malnourished, immediately seek medication attention and intervention. In addition, you also have the right to take legal action in the case of abuse or neglect. As soon as you notice the signs of malnutrition, we advise that you take note and report your observations to the nursing home management. You can also alert your local Elder Protective Services.
You can also make a claim with the nursing home’s insurance company for losses, pain, and suffering that resulted from this negligence on behalf of your loved one. Filing a personal injury case against the nursing home may be your legal right. A Nashville malnutrition lawyer can help advise you of your legal options.
How Pintas & Mullins Law Firm Can Help
At Pintas & Mullins Law Firm, we can assist you and help determine whether there was negligence involved in your case. A malnutrition lawyer can find out what level of care was provided by the nursing home.
It may be that the nursing home was understaffed, or its employees lacked proper training. However, neither of these reasons serve to excuse the nursing home or caregivers for a patient suffering from preventable malnutrition.
We can provide you some valuable services in your situation that include:
- Prove liability and harm caused by the liable party
- Provide legal counsel
- Negotiate and communicate with attorneys and insurance companies
- Exercise your right to compensation from injuries suffered
- Collect evidence of liability concerning malnutrition
Hire a Nashville Malnutrition Lawyer Today
No one deserves to be treated negligently, especially to the point of developing malnutrition. The elderly are especially vulnerable, which may be a reason why you placed your loved one in a nursing home. Suffering from complications and medical injuries because of malnourishment may entitle you to recover damages.
A malnutrition lawyer can assist you in the claims process. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (800) 842-6336 for a free case evaluation.