As the population of the United States continues to age, more and more elderly people are moving into nursing homes and assisted living facilities. These facilities are entrusted with caring for some of our most vulnerable citizens - seniors and disabled individuals.
Sadly, not all nursing homes or other facilities adequately care for the elderly. Some facilities see the horrors of abuse done to hundreds of residents, including sexual assault, physical violence, willful negligence, and so much more.
Nursing home abuse in Camden county should not be tolerated. Victims of nursing home abuse often suffer physically, emotionally, and financially. They may experience pain, humiliation, and terror. In some cases, nursing home abuse can even lead to death.
The Nursing Home Law Center
If you or your elderly loved one is a victim of nursing home neglect or abuse, you need to seek help from a nursing home abuse attorney. The affiliate New Jersey personal injury attorneys can help you seek the justice you deserve. Contact our Camden nursing home abuse lawyers at Nursing Home Law Center, LLC at (800) 926-7565 for a free consultation.
A nursing home abuse attorney from our law office can represent clients throughout New Jersey in various locations, including Camden County, Mercer County, Bergen County, Cape May County, Burlington County, Newark, Trenton, and Cherry Hill.
US Elderly Abuse Statistics: The Mistreatment of Nursing Home Residents
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), nursing home abuse occurs when a nursing home staffer or caregiver mistreats, injures, or kills a disabled or elderly person. Nursing home neglect is defined as a failure on the part of caregivers to meet residents' basic needs, which can lead to malnutrition, dehydration, bed sores, and other health problems.
Both types of abuse can have devastating consequences for elderly, cognitively impaired, and disabled victims, including physical harm, psychological trauma, and even death.
Research has shown that nursing home abuse and neglect are alarmingly common. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that nearly one-third of nursing home residents reported experiencing abuse or neglect the previous year.
Reluctant to Report Neglect or Abuse
Sadly, these numbers likely underestimate the true extent of the problem, as many victims are reluctant to report abuse out of fear of retaliation or because they don't know who can help them.
The effects of nursing home abuse and neglect can devastate victims and their families. Victims may suffer physical lacerations, psychological trauma, and even death. Families can also experience significant financial losses due to abuse or neglect.
In addition, victims often have to relocate to another nursing home, which can be costly and stressful.
Speak to a Camden County attorney today if you have any concerns about the welfare of your loved one.
Types of Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse
Family members trust nursing homes to provide a safe and comfortable environment for their elderly loved ones in their golden years. Unfortunately, nursing home abuse and neglect occur.
Each year, thousands of nursing home residents are victims of mistreatment. While many facilities provide quality patient care, a small minority do not. The injustice can lead to severe trauma or even death.
According to the National Council on Aging (NCOA), physical harm is the intentional or reckless use of physical force or coercion that may result in physical harm, pain, or impairment. Physical violence includes, but is not limited to, hitting, beating, pushing, shoving, shaking, slapping, kicking, pinching, and burning.
Physical abuse also embraces any unlawful, excessive, or unnecessary use of physical or chemical means to restrain or confine an elder, such as force-feeding and physical punishment.
Physically abusive behavior often leads to negative consequences for victims, such as wounds, lacerations, psychological trauma, and even death. Victims may also suffer from a decreased quality of life due to the abuse. In some cases, victims may be unable to live independently and will require long-term care in a nursing home or other facility.
Contact a Camden County attorney to assist you in bringing the abusers to justice.
Financial abuse is a form of elder abuse that occurs when someone illegally or improperly uses an elder's funds, property, or assets. Examples include misusing or stealing an older person's money or possessions, coercing or deceiving an elderly person into signing any document (e.g., contracts or will), and the improper use of conservatorship, guardianship, or power of attorney.
Financial exploitation can have a devastating impact on victims. It can lead to decreased independence, decreased quality of life, and even premature death. The abuse can also be very costly for victims in terms of monetary losses and emotional distress.
Sexual abuse of elders is a severe problem that often goes unreported. The National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) estimates that only one in five cases of elder sexual abuse is reported to authorities. Many victims feel ashamed or embarrassed about the abuse or may fear retaliation from the abuser.
Sexual abuse can take many forms, including unwanted touching, sexual assault or battery, sexual harassment, and sexual interaction with elders who cannot consent.
Emotional or psychological abuse can include verbal assaults, threats, intimidation, humiliation, and isolation.
Emotional abuse can take a toll on victims, leading to anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Victims may also struggle with trust issues and difficulty forming relationships.
Both sexual abuse and emotional or psychological abuse can have devastating effects on victims. Victims may experience physical injuries, psychological trauma, and social isolation. They may also suffer from decreased self-esteem and feelings of shame and humiliation. In some cases, victims may even develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Negligence can have a devastating impact on nursing home residents. Victims may suffer serious injuries, including broken bones and head trauma. They may also contract deadly infections due to a lack of proper hygiene or inadequate medical care.
Worst of all, many victims of nursing home negligence are too frail or vulnerable to speak up for themselves, resulting in them suffering in silence for months or even years.
Negligence Warning Signs:
- Injuries requiring emergency treatment or hospitalization
- Any incident involving broken bones, especially a fractured hip
- Any lacerations or death occurring during or shortly after an episode of wandering (including outside the facility)
- Heavy medication or sedation
- One resident injures another resident
- The resident is frequently ill, and the illnesses are not promptly reported to the physician and family.
When nursing home residents suffer neglect, it devastatingly impacts their wellbeing. Victims may suffer serious injuries, including broken bones and head trauma.
They may also contract deadly infections due to a lack of proper hygiene or inadequate medical care. Worst of all, many victims of nursing home negligence are too frail or vulnerable to speak up for themselves, and they may suffer in silence for months or even years.
Contact a Camden County attorney to assist you if you recognize the warning signs that your loved one is suffering neglect.
When Negligence Leads to Pressure Sores
Nurses must always be mindful of pressure ulcers when caring for nursing home residents, but they must keep an eye out to prevent these painful conditions from developing.
Bedsores occur due mainly because:
- The inability of the patient to move independently and they remain in one position for long periods
- Malnutrition or dehydration
- Poor circulation
- An advanced medical condition that decreases feeling in the skin
There are several stages of pressure ulcers, and each stage worsens. If left untreated, bedsores can quickly worsen and become infected. In some cases, they can lead to sepsis or even death. Moreover, even if victims recover from a bedsore infection, they may experience long-term damage such as scars, loss of sensation, or joint stiffness.
Negligence is punishable by law, and a Camden County attorney can assist you in obtaining justice for the pain and suffering of a loved one.
Medicare Requirements To Prevent Bedsores
Medicare requires all nursing homes to have a written prevention plan for bedsores. This plan should include regular assessments of each resident’s risk for developing pressure ulcers and interventions to reduce that risk.
Some of the most common interventions include repositioning residents every two hours, providing special mattresses or cushions that relieve pressure, and offering nutritional supplements to promote wound healing.
If you suspect your loved one is suffering neglect, contact a Camden County attorney for legal counsel today.
The Nursing Home Reform Act Of 1987
On July 22, 2014, President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law. Among the many provisions of this law was the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 (NHRA), which set federal nursing home quality standards for the first time.
The NHRA requires nursing homes to provide residents with comprehensive care plans, preventive services, and resident rights protections while residing in a long-term care facility. In addition, it established survey and certification processes to ensure that nursing homes meet these quality standards.
Since the passage of the NHRA, state governments have increased their oversight of nursing homes. More facilities are being closed for failing to meet state regulations and increased fines for violating those regulations.
Despite this increased scrutiny, there continue to be reports of substandard care in nursing homes across the country. Considering this, concerned victims and their families should take steps to protect themselves and their loved ones from potential abuse or neglect in a nursing home setting.
One such step is learning about your rights under the NHRA, a law created to protect the weak and vulnerable. Another step can be to contact a Camden County nursing home abuse attorney to obtain legal counsel regarding the abuse and neglect of a loved one.
Any Family Member Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Citing Medical Malpractice or Neglect
A wrongful death lawsuit provides legal opportunities for a victim's family to seek restitution for their loss. A Camden County attorney from our law office is here to assist you. The lawsuit can be brought against the party responsible for the death, including:
- Nursing home staff members
- Other family members
- Visitors or friends
- Another nursing home patient
- Outside contractors and medical professionals
- Assisted living facility or nursing home
- Company or government institution
These lawsuits can be complex and time-consuming legal proceedings, but they may provide some closure for family members who have lost loved ones. If you are considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit, it is essential to understand the basics of the process and what to expect. Our attorney can explain the process.
Contact a Mercer County nursing home abuse attorney from our law offices and allow us to give you a case review, free of charge.
Hire Camden County Personal Injury Lawyers to Resolve a Nursing Home Abuse Case
Were you or an elderly loved one injured by nursing home abuse or neglect while residing in an assisted living facility or nursing center? Did a caregiver, visitor, family member, or another nursing home resident cause you harm?
The personal injury attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center, LLC are legal advocates for nursing home abuse victims and handle cases just like yours. Our attorneys take immediate legal action on behalf of our clients to hold others accountable for their abusive behavior and ensure your receive the compensation for pain, suffering, and medical bills you deserve.
Contact a Camden County nursing home abuse lawyer today at (800) 926-7565 or use the contact form for a free case review to discuss receiving financial compensation for your damages. All confidential or sensitive information you share with our attorneys remains private through an attorney-client relationship.
Contingency “No Win, No Fee” Guarantee
Every nursing home abuse lawyer in our law offices accepts cases on contingency fee agreement. These arrangements ensure no upfront payments are required until your lawyer resolves your case or a negotiated settlement or jury award.