Articles Posted in Nursing Home Abuse

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Do you have a family member in a nursing home? Maybe it’s your mother or father or a grandparent; maybe a favorite aunt or uncle. You took great care to ensure that your loved one was placed in the best facility you could afford and insurance would cover. But on your recent visit, your mom didn’t look so good. Her hair wasn’t clean and she had bruises on her arms. Or perhaps your granddad was groggy and slept through the whole visit.

You spoke with the nurses and management and they said the bruises are natural because your mom is so frail, and you grandfather was drowsy due to his meds. These explanations sound feasible, after all the home was highly recommended and had a solid reputation.

Don’t discount your gut feelings there may be something wrong with how your relative is being treated. Abuse of the infirm and elderly is on the rise, and nursing homes are not exempt from abusive treatment of their residents. More than 2 million cases of elder abuse are reported every year, and nearly 1 of every 10 elderly individuals will experience elder abuse. The overwhelming majority of abuse incidents are not reported.

Last month the Georgia House panel approved a bill that raises the penalties for people who operate an unlicensed personal care home.  The bill is currently being considered by the Senate.  HB 899 would make the penalty for the first violation a felony rather than a misdemeanor, for a sentence of one to five years.  The second penalty would be punishable for one to ten years.

wheelchairThe bill was inspired by testimony from the Marietta Police Chief who described two cases in Cobb County where one woman was kept in a hot garage without food or medicine, and another  house where patients lived in squalid conditions.  In September of last year, a news station reported an unlicensed care home in Marietta that housed twelve residents in a basement with rooms made up of plywood walls, no doors, and no bathing facilities.  Officers also found in a refrigerator in the home with rotting food and overrun by insects.

When a loved one is hurt by terrible conditions, regardless of whether the facility is licensed or unlicensed, the owner or operator of the nursing home may be held responsible for elder abuse of any kind.  Elder abuse is considered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to be a public health problem and defines the group to consist of adults over the age of 60.  This population is at high risk of being subjected to physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, neglect, abandonment, and financial abuse due to the combination of physical and mental limitations that occur with age, causing increased vulnerability.  The CDC further describes each of these types of abuse and encourages consistent definition of elder abuse, noting that the inconsistency creates gaps in intervention and prevention.   Continue reading

With the baby boomer generation aging, there are more people living in nursing homes then ever before. They are currently 36 million people in the United States over the age of 65. This number is expecting to reach over 80 million by the year 2050. At some point, a large majority of these adults will need assisted living or need to go into a nursing home.

The majority of most nursing homes provide a safe and friendly environment for senior citizens. However, some elderly people will find themselves vulnerable to neglect due to a facility over capacity or under-trained staff providing care. These problems can often be made worse because an elderly person cannot communicate their needs to their family and friends. Some experts estimate that about one million elderly Americans are neglected in some manner each year.

The most common form of abuse is general neglect. However, there are numerous documented cases of mismanaged health care along with physical, mental, and emotional abuse. All of these forms of neglect can cause serious injuries among elderly people including malnutrition, broken bones, dehydration, and sadly even death.

Georgia Nursing Home Abuse and Negligence Legal Help

Families concerned about a loved one that has acquired a bed sore in a nursing home or hospital are quickly faced with difficult questions.  When dealing with bed sore issues, families may be faced with making difficult decisions from both a medical and legal standpoint.

Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of bed sores (also referred to as pressure sores, pressure ulcers, and decubitus ulcers) are the result of nursing home neglect and improper care.  It is for this reason that medical facilities are often hesitant to supply answers to questions regarding bed sores.