Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are designed to aid the elderly when they can no longer fully take care of themselves. Despite the caring nature of these facilities, many nursing personnel and staff members abuse or neglect residents in several horrifying ways.
Often, these cases of nursing home abuse go unnoticed and unreported by family members and can continue for years, leaving elders physically and emotionally scarred. Residents of nursing home are entitled to respect, dignity, and privacy. When a nursing home employee violates these rights, the nursing home may be liable for injuries.
There is no justification for you or a loved one to be victimized by nursing home abuse or neglect. A skilled St. Petersburg nursing home abuse lawyer can explore your legal options and fight to hold the negligent nursing home accountable.
Important Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home abuse can be particularly dangerous because many elderly victims are unable to report the abuse. Some nursing home residents lack the mental or physical capacity to speak up, while others may be too afraid to do so.
Nursing home abuse and nursing home negligence are technically different from each other. Nursing home abuse occurs when harm is inflicted on a resident. For instance, sexual assault and physical harm are considered types of abuse because the nursing personnel engages in an action. Nursing home negligence occurs when the nursing personnel fails to take an action. For example, if a resident develops bed sores because a staff member failed to turn the individual over enough times, it can be considered negligence.
Some common signs of nursing home abuse include:
- Signs of malnutrition
- Broken bones or fractures
- Unexplained cuts, bruises or lacerations
- Sudden unexplained weight gain or loss
- Untreated medical issues
If a family member notices signs of abuse, they should report their concerns through proper channels in the nursing home administration and should get the authorities involved if necessary. Florida has strict nursing home laws regarding the high standard of care expected from nursing homes, and if abuse is prevalent in a nursing home, the establishment may be liable for damages.
Common Factors of Abuse in St. Petersburg
Nursing home abuse cases are complex and involve many different causes of action including:
- Negligent practices
- Failure to properly train staff
- Breach of statutory or regulatory rights
Nursing homes are obligated to hire staff members who are qualified and adequately trained. In most cases this is followed, but it does not stop staff members from performing nefarious acts to elderly residents.
In some cases, nursing home employees are not properly trained to work with the elderly and do not provide the level care required by Florida law. When poor training of their staff leads to the injury or death of a patient, nursing homes can be held accountable.
In a nursing home accepts Medicare, the facility must follow Federal Regulations which set forth the standard of care. If the nursing home does not comply with any regulation and an elderly resident is injured, the facility may be held liable.
Let a St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Help
There is no justifiable reason for a nursing home having an environment that encourages, tolerates, or perpetuates abuse and neglect to its residents. If you have noticed signs of nursing home abuse, it is highly advisable to consult with a trusted St. Petersburg nursing home abuse lawyer.
A compassionate lawyer can sit with you to discuss how to hold the nursing home liable for any injuries your loved one suffered. Call today to set up a free consultation.