Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Lawyers in Los Angeles Families
We Stand Up for Elders in the Face of Institutional Abuse
The nation’s elderly population is growing faster than any other age group, and as a result, nursing homes and care facilities are filling up, and the need for new facilities is on the rise. However, as senior citizens increasingly enter nursing homes and other care facilities, many of them will not receive the care they need and deserve because they are abused or neglected by facility staff.
In the United States, there are more than two million cases of reported abuse of older and vulnerable adults every year. Sadly, because most cases of mistreatment go unreported, this number probably only represents a fraction of abuse or neglect that actually occurs. Much of this abuse occurs in the facilities to which we entrust the care of our loved ones, where residents may endure neglect, exploitation, and financial extortion. With abuse and neglect comes injuries that include broken bones or lacerations, bruises, and infections; in some cases, even death may occur.
Because many nursing home patients cannot speak up for themselves, we are here to give them a voice and protect their rights. Our team at Robins Cloud LLP has extensive experience representing victims of abuse in nursing homes and other care facilities. If your loved one has been affected, let us know. We’re ready to fight for them.
Is Your Loved One the Victim of Abuse or Neglect?
If your loved one is cringing or jumping at sudden movements or loud noises when they never did before, it’s possible that they are being mentally, physically, or sexually abused. Not all abuse leaves physical evidence, so other behavioral changes like sudden anxiety, mumbling, or rocking can be indicative of mistreatment. In some cases, there are physical signs of abuse a care team might try to hide from you. Unexplained bruises, general lack of hygiene, and unkempt or bloody clothing might also signal neglect. Further signs and symptoms that might signal abuse are:
- Bruises and cuts on wrists and ankles. I f you’ve found bruises or cuts around the wrists or ankles of your loved one, it may be because they’ve been physically restrained. In most cases, nursing homes allow their residents to move about freely as long as they aren’t threatening anyone or themselves. But even if they are considered dangerous, a patient can’t legally be restrained without a doctor’s order.
- Dehydration or weight loss unrelated to an illness. If your loved one is losing weight or seems like they aren’t getting enough fluids, and the weight loss or dehydration doesn’t appear to be linked to an illness, your loved one’s caregivers might be neglecting them or not making sure they meet their dietary requirements. Caregivers must give your loved one the nutrition and fluids they need, even if this includes providing physical assistance when it comes to eating or drinking. If your loved one is refusing to eat, their caregiver must file a report. If you do not see such a report, or a record of illness, you should consider it a red flag.
- Financial hardships that aren’t normal. If your loved one is not paying their bills on a regular basis, spending frivolously, or making inexplicable withdrawals from their bank account, it’s possible that someone is exploiting them financially. Thus, it’s a good idea to check in on your loved one’s finances so that issues like these can be avoided.
- Development of pressure ulcers/bedsores. When an injury or illness compromises a patient’s ability to move, they require regular assistance from the nursing staff to change positions. Otherwise, the unrelenting pressure on certain parts of the body could result in pressure ulcers—areas of skin necrosis that can develop into deep wounds. Not only are pressure ulcers agonizingly painful, they’re also an infection risk and can prove fatal if left untreated.
Other injuries an abused nursing home patient may face are falls, fractures, and medication under- or overdose or the use of the wrong medicine. Any situation in which an elderly patient one is abused or neglected should be taken seriously. Knowing the signs and symptoms of abuse can help you spot potential problems and keep your loved one from suffering any more.
Reasons to File a Nursing Home Abuse Claim
There are many different acts of abuse and negligence that can be cause for a nursing home abuse claim, and our attorneys can help you determine whether the hardships your loved one is facing may be compensable through legal action.
Nursing Homes Are Responsible for All Employees’ Behavior.
A nursing home or other elderly care facility can be continuously sued based on the ongoing conduct of an employee or the continuous practice at the facility, which may lead to numerous accidents, failures and intentional acts.
An example may be the home’s janitorial and maintenance failing to keep the premises reasonably safe and free of hazards, which includes everything from preventing slip and fall accidents to preventing injuries from one resident to another. Or, if one or more staff members neglect or abuse a patient, the ultimate liability lies with managers who failed to properly vet and supervise their employees.
Nursing Homes Must Meet State and Federal Regulations.
Like all medical facilities, nursing homes must follow health and safety policies and meet the standard of care when it comes to medical treatment for their patients. This includes:
- Following the proper treatment procedures for a specific injury or complaint
- Use equipment in a responsible manner
- Documenting patient needs, treatments, and care plans
- Clearly communicating when a patient needs care or emergency treatment
If the nursing home or other care facility fails to comply with these regulations and a resident or patient is injured, the nursing home can be taken to court for flouting regulations.
Some Nursing Home Patients Face Intentional Injury.
Horrifying though it is, some caretakers will intimidate patients by withholding care, confining them excessively, or devising other punishments that result in a resident or patient having mental anguish, physical harm, or pain. Sometimes, violence and harassment may be caused by another patient—in which case it is the caretakers’ responsibility to supervise an accused harasser when they are around others, especially those who have reported them. While some diseases like dementia and Alzheimer’s can result in increased aggression or violence, they are not an excuse for patient-on-patient attacks. A nursing home must be responsible for protecting all patients, even from each other.
Our Team Is Here to Help You and Your Loved One
At Robins Cloud LLP we believe that the rights and well-being of the elderly and vulnerable amongst us must be protected. Caretakers too often get away with neglecting or abusing their patients. We are here to help you and your loved ones fight back against such blatant and unfair wrongdoing. Our attorneys work tirelessly to make sure nursing home patients obtain the compensation they are entitled to for any medical expenses, pain and suffering, or other damages they have sustained due to abuse.
Robins Cloud LLP has been able to successfully achieve verdicts and settlements for nursing home abuse cases. We understand how painful these cases can be to face as a family and are here to do what we can to make the process of pursuing justice easier for you. If you believe your loved one is a victim of abuse or neglect, don’t feel like you need to take on the nursing home or care facility by yourself. Our team is ready to support you.
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