A 53-year-old Alabama licensed practical nurse is facing trial on charges of first degree elder abuse and neglect. In the latest update, the nurse recently entered a plea of not guilty.
A nursing home can serve an important function, helping ease the transition from retirement to assisted living. However, a recent article reminds us that not all facilities may provide the same quality of care. In fact, some nursing home staff might even be accused of service that falls below a professional standard of care. If such service were to result in resident injuries, a jury might determine the behavior to be negligent, thereby implicating civil liability and a potential damages award. In fact, our personal liability law firm focuses on nursing home abuse and neglect and can offer experienced assistance in proving negligence.
Most people don’t think about it much until we hear something in the news, but elder abuse is an unfortunate reality in nursing homes and other facilities for the aged. According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, elder abuse is estimated to affect between 1 and 2 million Americans age 65 and older. The type of abuse varies, but includes physical and sexual abuse, emotional abuse, financial exploitation, and neglect.
In one of our previous posts, we began discussing recognition of nursing home neglect and how nursing home care is regulated. As we mentioned, federal law specifies the standards of care for facilities accepting Medicare and Medicaid funding. States also regulate nursing home care. Here in Alabama, the agency that regulates licensing and/or certification of health care facilities, including nursing homes, is the Bureau of Health Provider Standards.
There is no question that elderly or disabled individuals should be treated well by those who care for them. In fact for many people charged with finding a place for a loved one to live, their main focus is making sure that they end up in a place where they will not be abused or neglected. Unfortunately, even when that is a focus while looking for a nursing home, it is possible that once living there, a resident could face behaviors that fall into those categories.
It is hard for most to imagine that anyone would do anything to harm loved ones who are elderly. As hard as it is to acknowledge, this does sadly happen—possibly more than most realize. According to one individual who prosecutes criminal cases involving victims who are elderly and disabled, elder abuse is underreported. For those who do not yet reside in nursing homes this could be due to trying to avoid that as an outcome.
No one wants to see a loved one hurt at the hands of the care providers who are paid to provide that care. Unfortunately, that alone is not enough to stop that from happening and elderly individuals are hurt or neglected all too frequently. This abuse and neglect can take many forms including physical, sexual, emotional and financial. There are things people can do to try to prevent such incidents from occurring.
There are many different things that could be a symptom of nursing home neglect. One of those things is the presence of bedsores. Pressure ulcers can appear in any patients who do not move a sufficient amount of time including those in hospitals and nursing homes.
Nursing home neglect is an unfortunate problem in care facilities throughout the nation, including in the state of Alabama. But just what constitutes neglect? I this post we will explore the topic.
Nursing home neglect and abuse can take many forms. While bruises and broken bones may be the first thing that comes to mind, the abuse residents endure may not leave any physical evidence. An example of this is the theft of resident medication.