Nursing Home Neglect and Wrongful Death: The Severity of Substandard Care
It is estimated that one in three elderly patients in nursing homes or assisted living facilities have experienced instances of physical, sexual and verbal abuse. Some instances have been so severe that the patient has been left battling serious physical injury or shocked family members have been left seeking answers for alleged wrongful death.
According to a recent calculation reported by U.S. News & World Report, there are 53 nursing homes located throughout the San Jose, California area with 27 receiving an overall rating of five stars as rated by the Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. To further compliment the current listing and rating scores, the report reminds those seeking nursing home services for a loved to first identify the services needed, what funds are available for care and most importantly, the level of safety provided at the institution.
Although the physical abuse of nursing home inhabitants is widely documented, instances of nursing home neglect or a breach of duty to provide a standard of care causes significant problems. It is highly suggested to learn more about the varying types of neglect and the level of risk involved, including:
- Emotional or social neglect - occurs when the patient is ignored, isolated or verbally abused by a nursing home staff member;
- Personal hygiene neglect - occurs when the patient does not receive a standard of care with regard to laundry, cleaning, bathing, dental hygiene or care level of basic daily hygiene;
- Basic needs neglect - occurs when the patient is denied adequate food, water or a safe and clean environment; and
- Medical neglect - occurs when the institution fails to provide adequate medical attention, application of prevention measures, denies medical treatment to prevent or heal bed sores, infections, cuts, or to treat known pre-existing conditions such as diabetes, cognitive impairments or mobility therapy.
If you recently selected a nursing home and admitted a loved one, it is imperative that you are aware and continually monitor your loved one in regard to nursing home neglect. Although neglect situations may be difficult to detect, the following warning signs may be indications of neglect:
- Sudden weight loss;
- Bed sores or severe bruising;
- Fall injuries;
- Evident dehydration or signs of malnutrition;
- Social withdrawal or unusual behavioral changes;
- Sudden indifference to nursing home staff; and
- Physical evidence of substandard environmental safety factors.
To ensure the safety of your loved one, it takes a combined effort from both family members and the medical and nursing home staff to ensure the highest standards of care. It is suggested that family members visit often, become highly vigilant of the surroundings as well as questioning incidents of change in behavior or physical transformations.
At the Law Offices of Corsiglia, McMahon & Allard, L.L.P. we understand the difficulties involved when having to make the difficult decision to place a loved one in a nursing home facility. We also understand that nursing home neglect is a national epidemic and conditions may increase the probability of wrongful death questions. If you recently lost a loved one due to possible nursing home neglect, our skilled San Jose wrongful death attorneys encourage you to contact our offices to schedule an initial consultation today.Sources