Nursing home care is a profitable industry with a reputation for providing poor services to the elderly and permanently disabled. This is not to say all nursing homes are bad, but that the industry as a whole suffers from significant problems. Profits are more important than providing care for many of these businesses. Nursing homes are also notorious for hiring unqualified and underpaid staff. The nursing home industry has attempted to sweep these problems under the rug.
In 2016, the American Health Care Association filed a lawsuit to challenge the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) rule that prohibited some nursing homes from using pre-dispute arbitration clauses. Nursing homes that received federal funds would have been affected by the rule. These clauses make it more difficult for nursing home patients and their families to file lawsuits for abuse and neglect.
It is well known within the legal community that nursing homes do not want to be held accountable when they fail to take care of our society’s most vulnerable members. Families of patients should know the different ways these facilities can harm their loved ones.
What Are Common Examples of Nursing Home Abuse?
There are several ways nursing homes can abuse patients.
- Physical abuse: Staff may intentionally inflict physical pain on patients. Family members should look for bruising or other signs of injury.
- Neglect: In some cases, staff will neglect to provide patients with medications, food, or medical care. For example, staff may neglect to clean wounds or help patients use the bathroom.
- Confinement: Staff may isolate patients as a form of punishment.
- Sexual abuse: There are cases where nursing home staff have sexually assaulted patients.
- Verbal harassment: Nursing home staff may yell at patients or threaten them with physical harm.
- Financial exploitation: Patients may suffer financial exploitation. Staff may cash checks without the permission of patients. In some cases, they may deceive patients to sign financial documents or forge signatures.
These are only a few examples of possible ways nursing homes can abuse patients. Future blog posts will discuss these examples in more detail.
Keefe Law Firm is dedicated to helping family members seek justice against nursing homes who have abused their loved ones. Our New Jersey nursing home abuse lawyers can help family members look at possible legal options.