The decision to place a parent in a nursing home can be difficult for their adult children. Throughout Kentucky, families struggle with the choice of taking on the responsibility of caring for their aging parents or finding suitable care for them in residential facilities. Many nursing homes provide support and comfort for men and women in their advanced years. Unfortunately, some fail to provide sufficient oversight and care for those under their watch.
Negligence and abuse in nursing homes is a reality that families must be prepared to identify and address if it happens to their loved ones. In some situations, litigation may be an appropriate step to take when abuse and negligence occur. This post does not provide its readers with legal advice but encourages those with nursing home care concerns to speak with local attorneys about their options for protecting their loved ones.
Failure to provide residents with basic needs
When a nursing home facility does not provide those under its care with items required for their basic care, the facility may be negligent in its duties to its residents. Some of the basic elements that residential nursing homes should provide include:
- Food and fluids
- Shelter and clothing
- Medical and occupational care
- Supervision and safety
The failure of a nursing home to ensure that all residents have access to these and other basic care items can jeopardize the health and safety of individuals in need of support. A lack of basic needs may be grounds for litigation against a nursing home facility.
Instances of abuse
It is an unfortunate truth that nursing home residents in the United States are sometimes subjected to abuse at the hands of their caregivers. Abuse can take on many forms, including but not limited to:
- Physical or sexual abuse
- Emotional or psychological abuse
- Financial abuse
When a nursing home hires and retains employees who subject residents to abuse, the nursing home may be liable to its victims for their losses. When abuse is suspected, it is important that victims’ families take action to protect the interests of their loved ones.
What constitutes neglect in a nursing home?
Neglect involves the failure to provide for the basic needs of nursing home residents, whether that be physical, emotional or medical. Nursing home neglect is often the result of understaffing or poor management.
Loved ones may notice any of the following signs if nursing home neglect is occurring:
- Sudden weight loss
- Poor hygiene
- New medical conditions
How do you prove nursing home neglect?
If you notice any of these signs, it is advisable to speak to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
A thorough investigation can help prove nursing home neglect. This may involve obtaining medical records, witness statements, government or court records of past lawsuits, and other evidence.
Taking a stand against nursing home abuse and neglect
Instances of abuse and negligent or neglect are unfortunately real in nursing homes across the United States. Individuals must do their diligence to ensure the facilities where their loved ones live are well maintained, properly staffed, and safely administered. When problems arise and victims suffer harm, there are legal options for seeking relief.
Litigation may be an option when nursing homes breach their duties to their residents. A knowledgeable personal injury attorney can provide guidance and representation for victims of nursing home abuse and negligence so that their rights are protected. If you have a parent in a nursing home, this can help you make the decision whether to pursue litigation against a nursing home facility.