RELATIVE IN A NURSING HOME? IF YOU SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING. STAT.
Never was the saying “If you see something, say something” more appropriate than in the case of older adults being cared for in nursing home facilities. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 500,000 older adults over the age of 60 are reported abused or neglected each year and many, many more cases go unreported each year.
Elder abuse is a significant public health problem, CDC cautions. While much of the abuse happens at home, abuse and neglect in facilities is a growing issue as well. For nursing home residents, the abuse often takes the form of neglect of basic hygiene, assistance with eating, and help with mobility, Sarah Blanchard of nextavenue.org explains. Very often, Blanchard goes on to say, while there is no evil intent towards patients, inadequate staffing and high turnover of nurses and aides results in a level of neglect that causes malnutrition, dehydration, and pressure ulcers.
Can a nursing home be sued for negligence? Definitely. At Ramey & Hailey, we emphasize, that when negligence, neglect, or abuse happens on the premises, causing harm to a patient or resident, a personal injury or medical malpractice lawsuit can be filed. You may have seen something and, in fact, said something, but if harm has befallen your family member, you have the power to stop the abuse and neglect from continuing to happen.
If nursing home accepts Medicare, the facility must follow federal safety regulations, ensuring that:
- the environment remains as free as possible from accident hazards
- each resident receives adequate supervision and assistance
The Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987 specifies that nursing home residents have the right to be free from verbal, sexual, physical, and mental abuse; the law also limits the use of physical restraints and psychotropic medicines.
Even when a relative of yours has been harmed at a care facility, it is no simple matter to prove legal responsibility on the part of the nursing home, and it takes an experiences personal injury law professional to “say something” that will help you recover damages through a civil lawsuit..