Peoria Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers
Putting an End to Nursing Home Neglect
Every nursing home resident deserves to be treated with dignity and respect and provided with the highest standard of care. Unfortunately, nursing home neglect is all too common in facilities across the United States. Neglect can take many forms, but in many cases, it is the result of inadequate staffing levels that prevent residents from receiving the attention and medical care they need. Neglect and other forms of nursing home negligence can lead to a variety of serious injuries and illnesses for vulnerable individuals who may be unable to protect themselves against mistreatment. If your loved one has suffered an injury due to nursing home neglect, an experienced attorney can help you determine the best ways to address this issue.
The Nursing Home Injury Center provides legal help and other forms of assistance for families who are in the difficult position of addressing harm suffered by an elderly or disabled loved one while they were receiving care at a nursing home or assisted living facility. We understand the strong emotions that are often involved in these situations, including the guilt that family members may feel for allowing their loved one to be placed in a situation where they suffered harm, as well as the feelings of anger and betrayal toward staff members and administrators who failed to provide the necessary care. We will work to ensure that matters related to nursing home injuries will be addressed correctly. We can advise families on the resources available to them, and we can help them take legal action to protect the rights and interests of a nursing home resident.
Addressing Different Forms of Nursing Home Neglect
Elderly or disabled individuals who reside in nursing homes should be able to expect a certain standard of care. Staff members should attend to their medical needs, ensure that they receive the proper nutrition, and provide supervision to help prevent accidents or other situations where a person may be at risk of injury. Unfortunately, some nursing homes fail to meet these standards, and when staff members do not provide the required level of care, patients may be seriously injured.
Cases involving nursing home neglect may include situations such as:
- Malnutrition – Nursing home residents should be provided with meals, and staff members should take steps to ensure that a person is eating and receiving the proper nutrition. If they fail to do so, the nursing home resident may experience a variety of health issues. Malnutrition can lead to problems such as a weakened immune system, rapid weight loss, muscle weakness, low blood pressure, fatigue, vitamin deficiencies, mood disorders, osteoporosis, anemia, and other serious health conditions.
- Dehydration – Nursing home staff may need to help residents with beverages or follow medical procedures to provide them with the necessary liquids. If staff members do not monitor patients to ensure that they are consuming enough liquids, a person may experience serious health issues, including headaches, confusion, lethargy, dizziness, fatigue, kidney stones, seizures, abdominal cramps, or even wrongful death.
- Medication errors – Staff members should be properly trained in administering medications and ensuring that a resident is taking the prescribed doses. If nursing home administrators or nursing staff members do not follow standard procedures, residents may receive the wrong medications, or incorrect dosages may be provided. Improper organization or training may result in missed dosages, medications being provided at the wrong times, allergic reactions, or other issues. These errors can have serious consequences for a nursing home resident, including the worsening of medical issues due to a failure to receive the proper medications or doses.
- Failure to provide medical care – Nursing home staff should have the necessary training to ensure that patients receive the proper medical treatment. When staff members are not properly trained, or when a nursing home is understaffed, the signs and symptoms of serious medical issues may not be recognized, and residents may not receive the treatment needed to prevent injuries or illnesses. Staff members should also follow the proper procedures when addressing a person’s mental needs. If the wrong treatment is provided, or if staff members do not respond to patients’ changing needs, serious injuries may occur.
- Lack of supervision – When a nursing home is understaffed, or when staff members fail to carry out their duties correctly, residents may be left unsupervised for long periods of time. Improper supervision may cause residents to be more vulnerable to nursing home abuse, or patients may not receive assistance with their daily needs, which could result in falls or other types of serious injuries.
- Improper wound care – Nursing home residents may be susceptible to physical injuries, and they may suffer wounds such as cuts, lacerations, burns, or bedsores. These wounds should be properly treated, and ongoing care should be provided, including changing bandages, cleaning wounds when necessary, and providing medications such as antibiotics. Inadequate care may result in dangerous infections that could threaten the health and well-being of patients.
- Choking – There are a variety of situations in which nursing home patients may choke on food or other objects or experience issues that affect their ability to breathe. If patients are not monitored properly, and if immediate care is not provided to a person who is choking, dangerous, life-threatening injuries may occur. A lack of oxygen during choking, even for a short period of time, can result in irreversible brain damage or other health issues.
- Wandering and elopement – If nursing home residents are not properly supervised, they may wander into dangerous areas, or they may even leave the premises of a facility. This can be especially dangerous for patients who have dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, as they may be unaware of the dangers that affect them, and they may be unable to return to safety on their own.
- Improper hygiene – Due to physical or mental health issues, nursing home residents may be unable to fully care for themselves and address their personal needs. If staff members do not provide assistance with issues such as bathing or going to the bathroom, residents may be more likely to experience infections and other types of health problems, as well as a reduced quality of life.
- Mobility issues – Some nursing home residents may need assistance with moving about throughout a facility, ensuring that they can participate in activities and interact with others. If residents are not provided with the proper equipment, such as wheelchairs, walkers, or canes, or if they do not receive assistance with getting out of bed or moving about when necessary, they may end up confined to their rooms, or they may be unable to move freely. This can lead to isolation and loneliness, as well as other issues that can affect a person’s physical and emotional health.
- Failure to respond to complaints – Residents of nursing homes should be able to advocate for their own needs and interests. Complaints about the care they have received, their treatment by staff members, the features of a facility, or any other issues that may affect their health and well-being should be addressed correctly. When patients are unable to speak for themselves, family members or others may speak up on their behalf, and a facility should take the proper steps to ensure that a person’s needs are being met at all times. If staff members ignore complaints or fail to address issues in a timely fashion, a person’s health and safety may be negatively affected.
In many cases, nursing home residents suffer injuries due to a combination of neglect and other factors. For example, inadequate supervision may result in a patient not receiving the medical care they need, and it may also put a person at risk of abuse by other residents.
Nursing home negligence can take many forms, but it often involves a failure to ensure that a facility is fully staffed by people who have the proper training to meet residents’ needs at all times. If injuries occur because a facility failed to meet the minimum acceptable standards, a person and their family may be able to take steps to ensure that the facility’s owner is held responsible for these issues and is required to put measures in place to protect the health and safety of residents in the future.
Get Help With Injuries Resulting From Nursing Home Neglect
If your loved one has suffered harm while residing in a nursing home, and you believe that they experienced neglect or other forms of negligence, understanding how to address this issue is not always easy. Fortunately, with an experienced nursing home neglect attorney on your side, you can determine the best options available to you. At the Nursing Home Injury Center, we can provide advice and guidance on the best ways to protect your loved one’s rights and interests. We can investigate a nursing home and identify staffing or safety issues or practices that put patients at risk of injuries due to neglect. We will make sure these issues are addressed properly while helping your family determine how to move forward successfully and provide your loved one with the proper care in the future. To learn more about how we can assist with your case, contact us at 309-524-6900 to set up a free consultation.