Fighting for Victims of Nursing Home Abuse Across the Nation
As a larger percentage of our population grows older each year, we increasingly depend on elder care. Unfortunately, there are over one million reports of elder abuse in nursing homes each year. Our nursing home injury lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm represent families and individuals harmed by elder abuse throughout the country. We can travel to you at no extra cost, bringing 50+ years of collective experience and unparalleled insight from our 10,000+ cases resolved.
Common Nursing Home Injuries
Our firm advocates for individuals who have been victims of injuries in nursing home and long-term care facilities, whether due to negligence or intentional abuse. We believe in fighting for those who do not normally have a voice, giving them a platform for justice.
Find out more about identifying the following types of nursing home injuries:
- Bedsores Also known as pressure ulcers, bedsores will appear on areas of the skin that are under constant pressure. If a personal is lying in a bed in the same position for a lengthy period of time without much movement, they are likely to develop a bedsore.
- Bone Fractures and Breaks A bone fracture is a serious medical condition where there is a break in the continuity of a bone. All bone fractures are broadly categorized as either: closed fractures, open fractures, or compression fractures.
- Bruises A bruise is a soft tissue injury that causes discoloration of the skin. Bruises are often caused by physical trauma to the discolored region. While some people bruise very easily, others only bruise as a result of a serious impact.
- Choking Meal times can be dangerous for nursing home residents that require more attentive care. Employees at many facilities, especially those that operate for profit and are understaffed, may simply dish out trays of food without monitoring residents’ consumption.
- Death Death in a nursing home may be the result of abuse. Signs of abuse to look for include: infections, malnutrition, and tampering with medication.
- Emotional Abuse Emotional or psychological abuse refers to the deliberate infliction of fear or anguish through verbal threats, intimidation, or other forms of maliciousness. This type of abuse can be very subtle and is often not clearly evident to families of loved ones in nursing homes.
- Falls Falls occur for many reasons in nursing homes. Even residents who require the consistent care of nursing home facilities are already prone to such accidents, because of various medical conditions, age, psychological trauma, or physical limitations.
- Financial Exploitation Financial abuse of the elderly can take many forms. Nursing home staff may forge signatures on checks, or elders may be manipulated to make financial decisions by court-appointed guardians.
- Malnutrition & Dehydration Malnutrition and malnourishment are conditions that result from an unbalanced diet that is either excessive or lacking in certain essential vitamins and nutrients. The real concern with these conditions is the extreme likelihood that the resident will develop one of many possible nutrition disorders.
- Veterans Neglect & Abuse The Long Term Care Institute (LTCI) is responsible for surveying VA nursing homes and conducting in-depth reviews. Sadly, these reviews have repeatedly identified a serious failure to treat veterans with respect and dignity.
- Wandering & Elopement According to the American Health Care Association, about 50% of nursing home residents suffer from some form of dementia. Wandering and elopement are common among nursing home residents, and pose an extremely dangerous threat, especially to those suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia.
- Sepsis Sepsis occurs when bacteria enter into an open wound, catheter, or IV line and cause a severe infection. Chemicals that battle the infection enter the bloodstream, prompt inflammation throughout the body, and create blood clots that block nutrients and oxygen from reaching vital organs.
- Poor Hygiene Nursing home negligence occurs when residents are left unwashed, unattended, or unnoticed for long periods of time. This type of neglect can have serious, life-threatening consequences, not only for the victim, but for other residents as well.
- Sexual Abuse Sexual abuse includes any non-consensual sexual contact, such as touching, rape, photography, videotaping, and verbal harassment. Neglect leading to abuse occurs when nursing home management fails to protect residents from unwarranted sexual contact, fails to report it if it does occur, and fails to properly investigate any suspicions or allegations.
- Medication Errors Overmedicating and wrongly medicating nursing home residents are common signs of nursing home neglect and abuse. Unfortunately, Medicare and Medicaid cuts have decreased the number of competent nursing home staffers available to residents, with many employees overworked and less attentive to their duties.
For a free legal consultation with a nursing home abuse lawyer serving nationwide, call (800) 794-0444
What Does Nursing Home Abuse Look Like?
According to numerous studies, the most common types of elder abuse fall under the following categories: neglect and abuse. Neglect occurs when a caregiver is negligent or indifferent to the well-being of the elderly person under their care. If a nursing home does not provide the necessary level of care required for the well-being of their resident, they may be negligent. Often, the neglect is not intentional, but rather a result of under-staffing problems at the nursing home.
Abuse of nursing home residents by a staff member or other residents includes physical, mental, and even sexual abuse. There are several types of abuse:
- Physical abuse includes everything from physical evidence of assault, such as bruises and broken bones, to untreated infections and bedsores.
- Mental abuse may be more difficult to detect by the loved ones of a resident, but it can be just as damaging as physical abuse. This type of abuse includes isolation, threats, or intentional negligence.
- Sexual abuse at nursing homes involves sexual harassment or sexual conduct that is forced on a resident without consent and can also cause severe physical and emotional harm.
Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Near Me (800) 794-0444
Common Warning Signs of Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
Some common warning signs of abuse or neglect in nursing homes include but are not limited to the following:
- Veteran Abuse Common signs of veteran abuse include: insufficient or incompetent staff, lack of sanitary and safe environment, physical and mental abuse, verbal and emotional abuse, improper medication administration.
- Malnutrition & Dehydration Common signs of malnutrition and dehydration include: weight loss, bone or joint pain, changes in the appearance of an individual’s skin or hair.
- Bedsores Common signs of bedsores include: slight discoloration of the skin, broken skin, absence of significant layers of skin, total loss of skin.
- Bone Fractures & Breaks Common bone fractures and breaks include: closed fractures, open fractures, compression fractures.
- Financial Exploitation Common forms of financial exploitation include: impersonating members of religious or government institutions requestion money, court-appointed guardians manipulating financial decisions, nursing home staff forging signatures, blatant theft.
- Emotional Abuse Common signs of emotional abuse include: anxiety or depression, fear or anger toward staff, sudden or involuntary social seclusion, low self-esteem.
- Bruises Common types of bruising include: subcutaneous (beneath the skin), intramuscular (within the underlying muscle), periosteal (a bruise on the bone).
- Death Signs of abuse to look for include: infections, malnutrition, and tampering with medication.
- Choking Common signs of elderly choking include: clogged breathing tubes, bruising around neck, failure to clear airways.
- Falls Nursing home employees are require by law to: implement proper precautions, maintain the cleanliness and safety of the facilities and grounds, keep a watchful eye on residents.
- Wandering & Elopement Common signs of a negligent nursing staff include: no wandering plans in place, lack of wandering management, no prevention of wandering, little or no response to incidences of wandering, use of physical restraints to prevent wandering.
- Sepsis Common signs of sepsis include: mottled skin, abrupt change in mental status, trouble breathing, decreased platelet count, abnormal heart rate, decreased urination.
- Poor Hygiene Common signs of poor hygiene include: facility residents wearing the same clothes day after day, rancid smells that are not taken care of, crusted spills and old messes, messy and unkempt employees, dangerous obstacles in public areas, unclean surfaces, uncontrolled pest problems, unexplained development of emotional or physical problems.
- Sexual Abuse Common signs of sexual abuse include: bruising around breasts or thighs, genital bleeding or infections, trouble walking, discomfort while sitting, STDs.
- Medication Errors Common signs of medication errors include: drastic change in mood or behavior, unexplained weight loss or gain, evidence of confusion or memory loss, unusual physical symptoms.
- National Center on Elder Abuse: Where to Report – Visit the National Center on Elder Abuse website for information on who to contact to report suspected abuse or neglect of your loved one in a nursing home. The site contains nursing home abuse hotlines for each state.
- Nursing Home Injury Laws – More information about the laws that protect you and your loved ones.