Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Philadelphia PA
It can be scary to think that your elderly loved one is potentially being neglected, but elder neglect is a very real problem in the United States. At the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell we work with our clients to get justice for their loved ones who have been neglected while in the care of nursing home staff. A nursing home abuse lawyer Philadelphia PA relies on can help you with your case.
At the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell we have over 35 years of experience helping people who have experienced elder neglect and their families collect a compensation that is fair to them.
Behaviors that can lead to a civil lawsuit against an elder care facility are as follows:
Negligent hiring of staff
If a nursing home hires an employee who ends up harming a patient either by purposefully neglecting or abusing them or unintentionally causing harm, they could be liable for your loved one’s injuries. If they did not perform background checks on their employees or did not supervise or train them correctly, they may also be responsible.
Negligent supervision of residents
One of the benefits of placing a loved one into an elder care facility is knowing that they will be supervised. If the nursing home does not provide adequate supervision and that leads to a resident falling or injuring themselves, they may be seen as negligent. A Philadelphia, Pennsylvania nursing home abuse lawyer will help you determine who should be responsible for the neglect of your loved one.
Failure to keep the facility reasonably safe and hazard-free
Nursing homes and assisted living centers are meant to be reasonably safe, meaning that they ensure that the residents are not at risk of being injured because the building and/or grounds were neglected. Safety can also be breached should another resident put others at risk. There is expected to be, as mentioned before, supervision to prevent such accidents or injuries. This also includes providing clean and sanitary conditions in common areas and resident rooms.
Failure to provide adequate medical treatment
Knowing that your loved one is going to be supervised while taking medications that they need, receiving rehabilitation or physical therapy, and receiving proper nutrition are all benefits of placing them in an elder care facility. When a facility neglects to give the patient their medications consistently, does not assist them physically or provides them with substandard medical care, there may even be a case of medical malpractice against the facility.
What Should You Look Out For?
Symptoms of physical neglect include bedsores or pressure ulcers, unexplained weight loss or weight gain, malnutrition, dehydration, poor person al hygiene, unclean environment, inconsistency taking medication and inexplicable injuries. Mental neglect is just as serious as physical neglect as it can leave an elderly person depressed, isolated, irritable, susceptible to mood swings and anxiety. Collect any evidence you may see; it could be useful as your nursing home abuse lawyer in Philadelphia, PA begins to build your case.
If you notice that your loved one is exhibiting more than one of these symptoms, it is important that you speak with the facility director and address the neglect. Doing so could keep your loved one from being further neglected. You may also be able to help your loved one by calling a nursing home abuse lawyer Philadelphia PA trusts from the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell.
What Does a Nursing Home Lawyer Do?
Nursing home lawyers are legal professionals who understand the sensitive and complex nature of nursing home cases. A nursing home lawyer can meet with a family who is concerned about their loved one to help them decide if mistreatment, abuse, or neglect is occurring at a nursing home facility. Families of a senior loved one can rest assured knowing that they have someone to fight for a sense of justice and protection. If you are suspicious that the facility your senior relative is staying at isn’t safe, then it is advised that you seek legal counsel promptly.
What may my lawyer ask me during a legal consultation?
To begin, your lawyer may inquire about what you have witnessed at the nursing home or in your loved one that is causing you concern. Have you seen odd bruises? Have you showed up for a visit to see them in dirty conditions? Do you just have a weird feeling something isn’t right? Your lawyer can apply their legal knowledge to the circumstances you describe to evaluate whether something could be awry.
There are three elements that must be true in order to bring forward a nursing home mistreatment lawsuit against the facility:
- A legal contract exists that binds the facility in providing a duty of care to the senior resident.
- The nursing home staff/facility had failed to uphold their duty to provide adequate care through intentional acts, negligence, or an omission.
- The mistreatment was “direct” or “proximate” and had caused harm to the senior resident.
Can my lawyer help me investigate the situation?
Depending on the situation you describe, your lawyer may help you investigate further into obtaining facts and evidence to prove that mistreatment occurred. Being able to bring forward reliable proof is a key factor in whether a lawsuit is won or lost. During the consultation, your lawyer can give you advice on what steps to take next, and what to do if your senior loved one needs immediate help.
What can my lawyer do to help me take action?
A lawyer that is experienced in handling nursing home cases, may suggest attempting to reconcile your complaint with the facility directly. Your lawyer may write a letter to the party in charge of the facility, outlining the specific concerns, how they can reply, and what course of action will be taken if there is no response or correction. If your lawyer deems it is time to take your case to court, these are typically the next steps:
- Initiating legal action through filing proper paperwork to the court and serving the facility with a letter of action.
- Preparing for the discovery phase, in which information, statements, and expert testimonies is be gathered prior to trial.
- Negotiating a settlement. Civil cases don’t often go to trial, but your lawyer will probably be prepared to do so if a fair settlement isn’t reached.
- A trial is commenced, where a judge and/or jury considers the facts and determines to outcome.
At the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell we are experienced in handling cases involving nursing home neglect and strive to help families to get the compensation that they deserve. Call our offices today at (800) 590-4116 to speak with a nursing home abuse lawyer Philadelphia PA relies on and schedule a consultation.
Rights Your Parent Has as a Nursing Home Resident
Helping your parent make the decision to move into a nursing home can be a difficult situation to navigate. It is important to understand the rights your parent has while residing in a nursing facility so they can continue to live a healthy, full life after this challenging transition is complete. Below, you will be able to browse some of the basic rights all nursing home residents are entitled to. However, your parent is entitled to numerous additional rights as well. If you ever have questions or concerns about your parent’s rights as a nursing home resident, don’t hesitate to connect with an experienced Philadelphia, Pennsylvania nursing home abuse lawyer from McEldrew Young Purtell. Our firm can answer your questions and help to ensure that your parent’s rights remain protected and respected.
Each home is required to provide a list of the rights of each resident and explain them, including the basics – such as receiving appropriate care while maintaining their basic legal and civil rights. Your parent should always be treated with respect and dignity at a nursing home without worrying about neglect, abuse or exploitation. There are also laws requiring homes to:
- Not use chemical or physical restraints
- Maintain or improve quality of life
- Allow residents to exercise individual rights without being discriminated against or coerced
If you believe that your loved one’s rights aren’t being respected, an experienced Philadelphia, PA nursing home abuse lawyer can help you explore your legal and practical options.
Right to Be Informed
Nursing home residents always have the right to be informed of everything related to the services they are being provided with, including benefits and risks of medical treatments, changes in their own state of health and care plan. They should also be made fully aware of:
- Facility regulations
- Previous state survey reports and the home’s plan for correction
- Contact information of the local ombudsman program and state surveyors
If your parent is not in a position to understand their rights due to disability, dementia, etc. know that you (and/or anyone placed in charge of their wellbeing by a court of law) has the right to be informed of these basics. If your parent’s nursing facility is failing to provide this information, please let your Philadelphia, PA nursing home abuse lawyer know.
Right to Complain
Some elderly individuals who are dependent on care from others do not like to rock the boat even if they are receiving less-than-adequate treatment. Your parent should feel as though they can raise their grievances to the home, and the staff should be willing to resolve the issues in a timely manner. If this is not the case, you can file a complaint with your local ombudsman or state survey agency. You can also speak with your Philadelphia, PA nursing home abuse lawyer.
Residents also have the right to personal, medical and financial privacy. They should be able to manage their own finances, if mentally capable, and be provided with information regarding services the home provides and their associated costs. If you suspect that your parent is not receiving proper care, contact your Philadelphia, PA nursing home abuse lawyer. Your actions could not only spare your loved one suffering, they could potentially prevent other residents from being abused or neglected as well.
Are bed sores considered signs of nursing home abuse?
If your loved one is living in a nursing home, it is likely costing your family a significant amount of money every year. In exchange for the costs involved, it’s a reasonable expectation to have that they are receiving quality care. Your elder’s physical, medical, and emotional needs should be met and administered to as needed. If you recently discovered that they are suffering from one or more bedsores, you have the right to be upset. Bedsores are painful and can drastically impact a person’s quality of life. In some cases, if left untreated, a bedsore will lead to a life-threatening infection and other catastrophic health conditions. But is a bed sore a sign of nursing home abuse? Before you can move forward with a claim or a lawsuit against the residential facility, you need to know if you have grounds to do so. McEldrew Young Purtell can help clarify your position. Our Philadelphia PA nursing home abuse lawyer has the specialized training and additional education required to practice law in this area. We offer families and nursing home residents a free initial consultation to learn if you have grounds for an injury claim. Call us today to learn more.
What is considered a bed sore?
A pressure sore, commonly called a bed sore, is also known as a decubitus ulcer as well as a pressure ulcer is an open wound. It typically discharges pus and has an unpleasant odor. They are painful and can worsen quickly if left untreated. They can also develop a serious infection in a very short time. They are commonly located on the buttocks, lower back, back, and legs.
What causes bed sores?
If the nursing home resident spends a significant amount of time in one position (usually this occurs while they are in their bed), then the body’s weight will cause fluids to build up in the area that is under pressure. This is why they are known as pressure sores. They are preventable by simply manually turning the resident while they are in bed because very often, an elder is not able to turn themselves often enough to prevent bed sores. Also, if someone is in a nursing home because they have a debilitating condition and can no longer care for themselves, they too may be unable to move as needed throughout the night. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the nursing home staff to periodically turn the resident’s body and adjust their position. If this is not occurring, it is a sign that the staff or the facility’s owners are not fulfilling their duty of care and as such are being negligent.
If your loved one was diagnosed with a bed sore, contact our Philadelphia PA nursing home abuse lawyer at McEldrew Young Purtell immediately.