Older people are at risk for bone fractures and breaks in nursing homes, but many are entirely preventable. Your family made the best decision possible for your loved one when you decided to rely on a nursing home care facility to provide oversight that you could not do alone.
If your spouse or parent in a nursing home broke or fractured a bone due to nursing home staff negligence, you do not have to face this on your own. The New York City bone fractures and breaks lawyer team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm may be able to defend the rights of your loved one and fight for compensation for their injuries. Receive a free consultation when you call us.
About Bone Injuries
While broken bones are relatively common for the general population, the consequences of a broken or fractured bone are more serious for older adults—for example, a rib fracture could put a 90-year-old at as much risk as eight rib fractures for a 40-year-old.
Bone fractures refer to any partial or complete break in the bone. Older adults are more prone to bone injuries due to several factors, including:
- Osteoporosis and other bone diseases
- Vitamin D deficiency
- Vision problems
- Lower body weakness
- Difficulties with walking and balance
- Medications that affect balance, such as sedatives or antidepressants
The classification of bone breaks and fractures can be complex, with many possible descriptions for explaining the extent and direction that a bone may break. In any case, for a healthy younger person, recovery involves a relatively straightforward healing process, which takes up to several months.
Broken Bones and Osteoporosis in Older People
Older people are naturally at higher risk for osteoporosis. While in some cases, serious consequences of osteoporosis can be avoided with medication, this does not mitigate the risk of fractures entirely. For many, it is much simpler and less costly to mitigate the risk of falling and fracturing a bone. Well-trained nursing home staff should be informed about typical health risks older people have—especially when it comes to preventing injuries from falls.
When Broken Bones Signal Elder Abuse
Unfortunately, if your loved one suffers from nursing home abuse, you may not know until circumstances are dire. Nursing home abuse can be physical, emotional, or financial, and include either active or passive neglect. There are not always noticeable signs before something has gone wrong.
A broken bone may not signal physical abuse, but it could be a sign of neglect. When it comes to elder abuse cases, it is important to remember that not all abuse is intentional. This does not make the circumstances for you and your loved ones any less painful.
The New York City bone fractures and breaks lawyer team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can discuss your situation during a free case evaluation, combing through your family’s experience to understand points of interest that could help build a case.
Legal Options for New York Nursing Home Residents
In New York City, nursing homes are regulated by state and federal laws. Unfortunately, that does not make building a case against negligent nursing home staff easier. Not all nursing home abuse is intentional, and not all nursing home staff members are mean-spirited. However, understaffing is a chronic issue for nursing homes, and there is no minimum staff-to-patient ratio requirement for nursing homes in the city.
N.Y. U.C.C. Law § 2801-D concerns action a resident can take against an abusive nursing home. If a nursing home resident is “deprived of a right or benefit” and is injured because of unreasonable neglect by nursing home staff, the injured person has the right to seek compensation for both compensatory and punitive damages.
Despite the lack of legislation for staffing ratios, there are legal options to fight for your loved one’s rights if they are being underserved at a nursing home. In addition to basic dignity and respect, nursing home workers are legally obligated to uphold a contract of care for your loved one.
Legal Claims for Nursing Home Bone Fractures and Breaks
When your loved one suffers a bone fracture or break in a nursing home, you might want to work with a lawyer on a claim that proves when and how the negligence of nursing home staff caused it. The following is a nonexhaustive list of possible claim types:
- Personal injury: A personal injury case can cover everything from medical bills to prescription medications—and in tragic cases, funeral costs—on behalf of your loved one in a nursing home. The statute of limitations for a personal injury case in New York is three years from the date of the incident.
- Breach of contract: When one party acts negligently and breaks a written or oral contract, you can pursue a legal case for the damages you incurred as a result. The statute of limitations for breach of contract in New York is six years.
- Medical malpractice: If a physician or medical professional contributed to the cause of your loved one’s bone fracture or break, a medical malpractice lawsuit can help hold them accountable. In New York, the statute of limitations for such a case is up to two years and six months from the final date of continuous treatment from the individual at fault.
For a free legal consultation with a New York City Bone Fractures and Breaks Lawyer serving New York City, call (800) 794-0444
Get Legal Representation for Your Case
If you suspect that your loved one’s broken bone was a result of the negligence of nursing home staff, you have a limited time to act. When you wait to pursue a legal case, you inch closer to the time limits for which you can still file a case.
You may be able to hold all negligent parties accountable and ease the burden of the litigation process if you decide to call the team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm. Contact us today for a free case evaluation with a New York City bone fractures and breaks lawyer team member.