When we entrust the care of our loved ones to a professional care facility, it is reasonable to assume that the level of care given will meet the appropriate standards and practices—and that your loved one will be treated with dignity and respect. It can be soul-wrenching to become aware that our most vulnerable family members have suffered harm at the hands of those responsible for their health and wellbeing.
If you suspect your loved one has been harmed or injured in any way as a result of nursing home abuse, the team at The Cochran Firm – Nashville may be able to investigate what happened. We may determine if the proper level of care (as demanded by federal and state regulations) was provided. Please speak to us today at (615) 651-7451 to find out what a Hendersonville nursing home abuse lawyer may be able to do to help.
Abuse in a Nursing Home Can Take Many Forms
Sadly, nursing home abuse is not uncommon and can cause permanent damage, often accompanied by severe psychological consequences. A Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) study states that there are higher mortality rates in older people who have suffered abuse. Elder abuse is an alarming and growing public health and criminal justice concern.
When someone responsible for the care of an older person intentionally harms them or puts them at risk of harm, their negligent actions could be considered abusive. Nursing home abuse can be difficult to identify, and damage can be inflicted in many ways, including:
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Psychological abuse
- Financial abuse
The consequences can be devastating—or even fatal—and can be a combination of several types of abuse. Additionally, many cases go unreported for several reasons, such as:
- The older person is unable to communicate verbally due to health conditions or medication
- The victim is too afraid of further retaliation if they speak up
- Perceived lack of evidence or proof of abuse
- Inadequate or missing medical and treatment logs
- Obstructive behavior and lack of communication from the nursing care facility
It is important to note that you do have support available to you at this most distressing time. You may help your loved ones by seeking legal representation. You may be entitled to pursue justice and compensation on their behalf.
Other sources of useful advice may be found from national agencies such as the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) and Elder Justice, which are committed to developing systems to protect older people and prevent abuse.
For a free legal consultation with a nursing home abuse lawyer serving Hendersonville, call 615-678-6278
Recognizing the Signs of Elderly Abuse
If you have noticed a change in the physical or emotional nature of your loved one that is unusual, it could indicate that things are not right. Warning signs to be aware of include:
- Poor hygiene
- Unexplained and sudden weight loss
- Changes in personality such as depression or anger
- Individuals showing unusual interest in the personal or financial assets of an elderly person
- A pattern of missing belongings or property
- Stained or unwashed clothing
- Bloodstained clothing
- Sudden withdrawal from family or friends and social activities
- Complaints about physical pain
- Unexplained cuts, bruising, or other injuries
- Frequent trips to emergency rooms with injuries
- Delayed or inadequate medical care
The list is not exhaustive, so it is important to keep in regular contact with your loved one to check on their wellbeing and be their support, should they need to confide in you.
It can also be beneficial to request regular updates from or report any abuse to the nursing home administration. Additionally, you can request information from your loved one’s doctors and other care providers to address any concerns you may have (as long as these parties are not involved in the abuse).
An important next step could be to consult with a Hendersonville nursing home abuse lawyer if you believe your loved one has suffered injury or harm in a long-term care facility. A lawyer might be able to tell you about your legal options to protect your family member in a free case review. They may also make you aware of the statutes of limitation that could affect your right to pursue compensation.
If you believe your loved one is being (or was) abused in a nursing home, we may help you with your claim—so that you can focus on your loved one’s recovery. Reach out to the team at The Cochran Firm – Nashville at (615) 651-7451 today.
Proving Nursing Home Abuse Can Be Tough
It is essential to choose a law firm that handles nursing home abuse cases. Proving such abuse can be challenging and legally complex. To bring a claim against a nursing home, you will need to demonstrate:
- The nursing home had an obligation to provide a duty of care to your loved one
- The care facility or employee failed to uphold that duty of care
- Harm or injury resulted as a direct consequence of said breach of care
A lawyer with knowledge of this type of abuse may be able to provide a thorough investigation of the suspected abuse. They also may be able to provide you with access to medical professionals who may offer expert witness testimony.
Other ways in which a Hendersonville nursing home abuse lawyer wants to further strengthen your claim is by:
- Collecting evidence such as hospital records, nursing home records, and other relevant care provider records and statements
- Deciding who is responsible for the neglect, and who to bring a lawsuit against
- Exploring any settlement options offered by the defendant(s)
- Representing you in court if your case does not result in a pre-trial settlement
While financial awards cannot make up for the terrible emotional and physical harm inflicted on your loved one, it may ease the burden. With a settlement or judgement, you can pay for medical and rehabilitation costs and the cost of moving your loved one to a different care setting.
Legal Support for You and Your Loved Ones When You Need Us
If you are searching for a law practice who takes nursing home abuse cases, the team at The Cochran Firm – Nashville wants to fight for you. We may take your case as far as necessary to seek the justice and compensation your loved one deserves.
Call (615) 651-7451 today for a free case evaluation and to learn more about your legal options.