Victimized by abuse in a nursing home? Seek justice with our skilled Omaha nursing home abuse lawyer. We fight for your rights, dignity, and peace of mind.
Protecting the Rights of Nursing Home Residents
Placing your elderly loved one in a nursing home facility has many conflicting emotions, but you’re doing so because your loved one needs a certain level of professional care.
Nursing homes are supposed to provide high-quality care that ensures your loved one’s health and enjoyment of life. However, when nursing homes fail to take care of their elderly residents, the effects can be severely detrimental to your loved one’s health. They didn’t deserve that treatment, and you can seek justice on their behalf with an Omaha nursing home abuse lawyer from Welsh & Welsh PC, LLO.
The citizens of Nebraska need legal professionals who will fight for their rights when violated. We ensure they have a strong voice when holding someone accountable for their abusive or negligent actions. Welsh & Welsh PC LLO attorneys have extensive experience in personal injury law, and we’re ready to help those who have been wrongfully hurt.
The Difference Between Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
While abuse and neglect are often used interchangeably, they apply to different situations. When there is abuse in a nursing home, it’s the deliberate actions of a person who means to harm the resident.
Negligence, on the other hand, is when the resident receives substandard care. While the staff may not intentionally harm the patient, their inability to provide the care the nursing home resident needs results in them getting hurt.
Your elder abuse lawyer will carefully examine your loved one’s case to determine if they were a victim of abuse or neglect. Both cases are unacceptable, and the right parties must be held accountable for their actions.
An abusive caregiver could show that the nursing home needs better methods of hiring and vetting their employees. Neglect may indicate that changes must be made to ensure that each resident’s needs are met and that the staff can keep them safe and maintain a high quality of life.
With a dependable nursing home neglect lawyer at your side, you’ll have someone asking the hard questions about how your loved one was treated, who was around them, and what kind of suffering they went through.
What Type of Elder Abuse Can Occur in a Nursing Home?
Your Omaha lawyers know the types of abuse or neglect in a nursing home. They may ask questions to understand how your loved one was poorly treated. Typically, abuse may fall into these categories:
- Physical abuse: This abuse could entail staff hitting or shoving residents. They could also handle them too roughly, such as squeezing too hard if they’re helping a resident move. About 29 percent of all nursing home abuse complaints are physical.
- Psychological: Staff can also harm residents psychologically. This usually involves speaking harshly, name-calling or using derogatory words, and swearing. Constant belittling can significantly harm a senior’s self-esteem.
- Financial: Seniors, especially those with memory loss, may not know if they’re being taken advantage of financially. People could steal their credit cards or forge signatures on checks.
- Abandonment: Sometimes, nursing homes drop off residents at a hospital or leave them in a public place. This is called abandonment, which may happen because the home doesn’t properly care for the resident. It’s also incredibly dangerous to the resident as they may wander and hurt themselves or not know who to contact.
- Sexual: This abuse occurs when there is any non-consensual sexual contact involving a senior. This could include physical sex acts but extends to showing an elder pornographic material, forcing them to undress, or other non-physical forms of sexual abuse.
- Social: This can either be intentional or unintentional. A malicious staff member could purposely keep a resident from seeing other residents and participating in social activities essential to a senior’s health and well-being. If the nursing home is neglectful, they may be unable to ensure their residents get the daily social interaction they need.
- Resident-to-Resident Abuse: Sometimes, other residents may cause harm. This could involve physical or sexual abuse, theft, bullying, or other harmful behaviors.
- Healthcare Fraud and Abuse: This involves unethical practices by healthcare providers, including overcharging, double-billing for medical care or services, charging for care that was not provided, over-medicating or under-medicating, or falsifying a patient’s medical records.
There are also forms of neglect that can severely harm a resident. They may not get their medication on time. For those with health conditions or who are currently trying to get over an illness, missing a medicine dosage could be fatal.
There’s also the chance of a resident not getting the daily care they need, such as getting regular nutrition, staying hydrated, and maintaining their hygiene. Residents may require help brushing their teeth, using the bathroom, bathing, and changing into fresh, clean clothes. A nursing home that doesn’t have the staff to support its residents will likely have seniors in soiled clothing or in need of personal care.
When you seek help from Welsh & Welsh PC, LLO, one of our skilled Omaha nursing home abuse attorneys, will find out what happened to your loved one and if it resulted from abuse or neglect. While neither isis is acceptable, this will help create a strong case for your loved one and help you get a fair settlement.
We understand the difficulty of having a family member in an elder care facility. You want them to get the best treatment and be safe from harm. We’ll work hard to answer your questions and help you understand the legal process so you know what to expect.
If you’ve been through an elder abuse situation, contact our knowledgeable and experienced Omaha nursing home abuse lawyers at Welsh & Welsh PC LLO. We want to help you get the justice your family deserves. Contact us today for a free consultation.
The Consequences of Elder Abuse
Abuse and neglect can have overt effects on a senior citizen. Their quality of life can diminish, and their demeanor and health will also. Unfortunately, for some residents, vocalizing what’s happening to them isn’t an option.
Some may feel too scared to speak up for fear of retaliation from the abuser or the nursing home. Many residents in a home who have dementia or other forms of memory loss may not be aware of what’s happening to them or may be unable to communicate who is hurting them because dementia can affect a person’s ability to speak.
When residents aren’t getting the care they need, they are more susceptible to illness. Common colds or other viruses can easily spread when basic needs aren’t met. These can be severely detrimental to residents with compromised immune systems, and fighting these illnesses can be more difficult.
Seniors who are victims of abuse may show signs of injury. They may have unexplained bruising or bumps. In more severe cases, they could have broken bones. A nursing home with abusive or negligent staff is likelier to have injured residents. One of the most serious injuries for a senior is falling.
When seniors fall, they may not have the reflexes to catch themselves and hit the ground. This can also cause injuries like hip fractures or head trauma. A fracture is concerning because it can become infected if the senior doesn’t get treatment quickly. Seniors take longer to recover from more serious injuries, which may permanently affect them.
A fall can happen from an abusive staff member pushing a resident. But negligence can also cause falls. When residents don’t get the regular care and attention they need, they may try to independently do tasks they need assistance with. So, if a fall-risk senior tries to walk to the bathroom or reach for an item, they could lose their balance and fall. A negligent nursing home with insufficient staff to get to every resident promptly could leave residents alone for hours. It could take significant time for staff to know someone has been injured.
Falling isn’t the only risk for neglected seniors. Many residents may be confined to their beds or wheelchairs. Residents with mobility issues need to be regularly shifted so they don’t develop pressure sores. Also known as bed sores, these can be extremely painful injuries when a resident is in the same position for hours.
While some of these injuries or illnesses are more overt, there are small changes that you may pick up on that tell you something is off. You may also notice changes in your loved one’s demeanor. You know their personality and what’s normal for them. Major changes like fear, agitation, or quietness could indicate something wrong. Residents may also develop symptoms of anxiety or depression. If your loved one seems completely subdued, it could be because the staff uses chemical restraints, which is illegal but sometimes happens. After all, it makes residents easier to control.
How Can a Lawyer Help You?
While we discuss what happened to your family members, we’ll work on getting all the evidence we need to prove that they were a victim of abuse. You may wonder how else an Omaha nursing home abuse lawyer can help you. We’re here to ensure your voice is heard and your loved one’s rights are protected. Our knowledge of the law and passion for justice will give your loved one a strong advocate who will demand that the guilty party is held accountable for what they did.
As we build your case, we’re looking to prove that the nursing home did not meet the duty of care that they owed your loved one, and as a result, your loved one suffered for it. We can do this by speaking with you and investigating the case, which could mean talking to other people at home or looking at medical records that show how your loved one was hurt.
Let an Attorney from Welsh & Welsh PC, LLO, Represent You and Your Loved One
In Nebraska, you have four years to bring your claim forward. If you file for nursing home abuse past the statute of limitations, you risk your case being thrown out. It’s best to contact an elder abuse attorney as soon as possible so we can start collecting the facts. Over time, certain details may become fuzzy or physical evidence could be lost.
Contact us today to start getting your loved one the justice they deserve. We’ll schedule a free consultation and review the points of your case. Then, we can start getting your loved one the compensation they deserve.