Aurora Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Giving a Voice to Those Who Have Been Neglected or Abused
No one should suffer neglect or abuse, least of all those cannot defend themselves and are most vulnerable. Among the latter are the residents of nursing homes, adult daycare centers, and assisted living facilities. According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, at least 10 percent of the elderly are abused which includes various types of abuse, from verbal to physical and more. According to data from the National Ombudsman Reporting System that report such matters in nursing facilities, in the year 2014, over 14,000 complaints of abuse were received including gross neglect and exploitation. Furthermore, abuse and neglect numbers may be much larger as elder abuse often goes unreported.
Nursing home neglect and abuse involve many forms of inadequate care, nursing errors, and sometimes, even the intentional harm of a resident. It also involves a broken promise – the promise that the nursing home will keep your loved one safe and free from harm. In our view, that is simply unacceptable and justice must be pursued to right this most devastating wrong. At The Rooth Law Firm, we understand the depth of a family’s pain that occurs with each broken promise. That is why we fight for the rights of each and every one of our clients.
Connect with The Rooth Law Firm at (800) 598-4348 or through our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case.
Contributing Factors to Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect
People often ask us, “Why does this happen?” No justifications excuse nursing home abuse and neglect. Based on our in-depth experience, here are some of the reasons the abuse and neglect occur.
Focusing on Profits
Nursing homes are either for-profit or nonprofit facilities. In 2016 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that nearly 70% of all nursing homes were for-profit facilities. When corporations focus on their bottom line rather than on the care provided, the drive to save money predictably leads to poor care.
According to the National Association of Nursing Home Attorneys, 90% of nursing homes in the United States are inadequately staffed. One nurse’s aide may care for up to 30 residents. The U.S. Department Of Health And Human Services reports that there are approximately 15,600 nursing homes in the United States, with a total of 1.66 million beds. This means that nursing homes range in capacity between 500 and 1,300 beds.
How does that translate to neglect? Most often, the least-paid, least-trained members of the nursing staff are the aides, who provide the primary assistance with activities of daily living to the nursing home residents. In a wing of 25 residents, having only 2-3 aides on a shift does not give the employees enough time to provide appropriate assistance needed by each of the residents under his or her care. It also causes increased stress on the aides who become unhappy and unmotivated in their jobs.
With too few skilled nursing personnel in the nursing home, such as registered nurses or licensed practical nurses, there simply isn’t enough time for the nursing staff to review the full clinical picture of each resident under their care. This oftentimes results in avoidable and preventable conditions having disastrous consequences.
The appropriate care of an elderly nursing home resident involves a multidisciplinary care team, including nursing staff, aides, physical, occupational, and speech therapists, rehabilitation staff, wound care staff, dietitians, and other disciplines including physicians. The state and federal regulations require the nursing home to coordinate resident care amongst all of these members of the care team. A good working knowledge of the usual and customary issues faced by nursing home residents can translate to early recognition of potentially serious conditions and diseases and the prevention of injury and even death. Unfortunately, too often the nursing home management fails to allocate enough money and resources to provide adequate training of its staff. Poorly-trained nursing staff can lead to many different types of nursing home abuse and neglect and a failure to recognize preventable injuries.
Low pay is generally more attractive to students and people with less experience, or people who have been laid off and take a low-paying job in a nursing home before being hired at a hospital or clinic. Low pay is one of the contributing factors to hiring inexperienced or unqualified staff members to care for residents who have cognitive impairments, dementia, or otherwise poor health. These are serious needs and residents are dependent on these staff members who are working in a stressful environment for unsustainable wages. This, of course, leads to high turnover among care and even more instability in the facility.
Common Issues in Nursing
Many different types of issues can occur in nursing homes as a result of abuse or neglect. These include:
- Bed sores and pressure sores
- Broken hips
- Coumadin bleeding
- Medication errors
Nursing home abuse can include many different forms of abuse besides physical abuse. It can include sexual exploitation, financial exploitation, verbal abuse, and emotional abuse. Emotional abuse is one of the lesser-known types of abuse in nursing homes. In some cases, staff members at nursing home facilities have been known to taunt residents who they believe are unable to feel or even notice if they are being humiliated. Many nursing home residents are afraid to speak up against abusive caregivers for fear of further retaliation.
Defend Your Loved Ones with Help From The Rooth Law Firm
Nobody wants to think of their loved ones as being physically, emotionally, or financially hurt, having their needs rejected, and suffering in silence. Certainly, as a family member, when you find out that this has happened to a loved one in a nursing home, you want to seek justice. Your loved one may be eligible for various kinds of damages, from medical expenses to pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and more. Our firm can step in on your behalf in such matters. We dig deep into these matters in a determined and uncompromising manner to build strong claims and hold those accountable who have victimized your loved one.
Contact us at (800) 598-4348 to make arrangements to discuss your case with our attorney today.