The 1.5 million people living in U.S. nursing homes have 2 million infections on average in a year, according to a University of Michigan study. Many residents are particularly vulnerable, and cannot easily fight infection, as they have weakened immune systems from pre-existing health conditions.
Your loved one has a right to a safe, clean, and sanitary environment in their nursing home. It is critical to their health as an older adult.
When a nursing care facility fails to contain any infectious disease due to negligent action, it can be grounds for a lawsuit against the nursing home. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to pursue compensation on behalf of your loved one.
If you have any questions or concerns, it can be an excellent first step to consult an Atlanta infections outbreak and disease lawyer at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm. Call our team for a free case evaluation.
A Basic Right to Be Afforded Safety and Protection in Nursing Homes
Outbreaks such as respiratory infections and influenza are, unfortunately, all too commonplace in nursing homes.
Statistics from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services attribute around 388,000 older people dying due to healthcare-associated infections in nursing homes each year, with up to 3.8 million outbreaks recorded annually.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) define neglect in a nursing home as a failure to give the resident the care and protection they are entitled to. Sometimes, neglect can cause infections and disease outbreaks when nursing home staff fails to provide proper hygiene and cleaning care.
Some contributory factors that enable infections to have such devastating effects in nursing homes include:
- Unsanitary shared living environments.
- Visitors and healthcare professionals are bringing infection into the facility from the outside community.
- Lack of provision of adequate personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Understaffing preventing prompt intervention in managing infection control.
- New admissions from hospitals and other nursing homes carrying a disease.
- Lack of or insufficient staff training.
- Poor dental care significantly increasing the risk of pneumonia and circulatory diseases.
- Staff disregarding PPE use and infection control procedures.
If you have concerns about the quality of care provided to a family member who has suffered from an infection or disease, or they have died from one, it can be beneficial to consult an Atlanta infections outbreak and disease lawyer.
You may be able to pursue compensation on behalf of your loved one for:
- Medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
- Relocation to a different care facility
- Pain and suffering
- Funeral and burial costs in the case of wrongful death
Proving Negligence in Infection Outbreak Cases
Nursing homes must provide an adequate level of care for its residents when they are unable to care for themselves properly. When they do not meet this standard of care, and an infection occurs or is not adequately treated, it can lead to severe illness or worse.
When you next visit your loved one, be mindful of the following signs of neglect:
- Unclean conditions or odors in communal living spaces.
- Frequent urinary tract infections which could be indicative of poor hygiene and infection control and can lead to chronic kidney infections.
- Understaffing issues resulting in substandard resident care and infection control.
- Poor dental hygiene and overall appearance.
- Unclean clothes and bedding.
- Bedsores that can result in sepsis.
- Care providers not using the proper PPE.
If you have noticed any of the above, a lawsuit may be a suitable option if you are considering pursuing compensation for your loved one. Still, you will need to demonstrate that any harm to your loved happened due to the negligent actions of the nursing care facility or staff member. You must prove three things:
- The nursing home owed a duty of care to your loved one.
- The nursing home breached that duty of care.
- Your loved one suffered injuries and losses as a result of the breach in the duty of care.
Your Atlanta infections outbreak and disease lawyer will be able to conduct a thorough investigation into what went wrong and collect the necessary evidence to prove negligent action on the part of the nursing care facility by consulting with various medical professionals. The latter can offer expert testimony to support your claim.
The team at Pintas & Mullins is ready to help you navigate the complex legal issues present in nursing home neglect cases. Call a member of our team and voice your concerns in a free case evaluation today.
Help for Your Loved One When They Need it Most
Nursing home neglect lawsuits can be complicated, and you only have a certain amount of time to bring your case before the courts due to limitations imposed by state law. It is vital to act quickly if your loved one is the victim of an untreated infection while in the care of a nursing home.
Such facilities have access to powerful legal representation when faced with allegations of abuse or neglect. The team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm will do everything in their power to fight for the rights of your loved one and strive to provide the highest level of legal representation for the victims of nursing home neglect.
We only charge fees after a settlement, and we offer a free case review at no cost to you but your time. Call us today and pursue the compensation your loved one deserves.