When we place our loved ones in a care facility, we expect that the needs of our loved ones will be met with ease. After all, this is what nursing homes and elder care organizations claim to do, right?
In general, elder care facilities want to take great care of your family members, but sometimes problems surface, leaving your family member to bear the brunt of those problems. We know it’s hard enough to make the decision to place your family member into full-time care, but what’s harder, is wondering if you’ve chosen the right one.
There have been terrible news stories that reveal elder care abuse and nursing homes mishandling their residents. In fact, elder abuse is on the rise according to the CDC in a recent study. If you have found yourself in this situation, we urge you to call King Law immediately to look into your claim. There are also other situations that you should be aware of if you have a family member at a nursing home. Some of these issues, you might not have heard about before as they are misleading practices or against the law. In this article we are going to discuss some of the issues facing elder care and when you may need to contact a nursing home lawyer in Naples.
Naples Nursing Home – Common Legal Issues
Historically, Texas and Florida have led in nursing home litigation claims which signal to caretakers that they should be very active in the care of their family member. When some sort of behavior, physical characteristics, or shifts in personality are witnessed; caregivers should take these changes seriously and without a significant amount of oversight.
In Florida, studies have shown that claims of residents falling (resulting in a physical injury) were higher than in most states. Other complaints have involved injuries, dehydration, weight loss, bed sores, and emotional distress. Florida also saw higher than average nursing home deaths, resulting in wrongful death suits.
How to Detect Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
Here are some ideas on how to learn if any misconduct, abuse, or neglect is impacting your loved one. We suggest keeping track of these things and contacting King Law, a Naples nursing home abuse lawyer, quickly.
- Does your loved one show physical signs of abuse or restraint?
- Has your loved one’s behavior changed to either that of anger or depression?
- Have you seen any physical evidence (sentimental items) missing or broken in the room of your loved one?
- How does your family member react to the people who commonly care for them?
- Has your family member’s health significantly gotten worse since being admitted?
- Is your loved one dehydrated or losing weight?
- Are injuries being blamed on the resident or is the staff claiming the resident is being difficult?
These are just a few ways that can trigger you to start looking closer as to what is happening at the care facility. The more actively you participate in the care of your family member, the greater the chance of catching the misconduct. Now that you know about some of the more common forms of misconduct, here are some other ways that nursing care and elder care facility can take advantage of your family member.
Less Common Forms of Nursing Home Misconduct
First and foremost, you should make yourself aware of the Nursing Home Reform Laws. This will help you better know what your legal rights are and how you can call care facilities out for their practices or take them to court. Here are just some of the ways a care facility can mishandle your loved one, and when you need to potentially speak with a Naples nursing home abuse attorney.
Restraints and Feeding Tubes – These are courses of action that should only take place as a last resort. Care facilities will have to justify why they are using restraints which should have more to do with the protection of your loved one and/or provide evidence that they are a threat to others.
Mood-Altering Medications – Nursing homes should not mandate any mood-altering medications to make their jobs less difficult. These prescriptions should only be due to mental disorders after careful review by their physicians and caretakers.
Co-Signers as Grounds for Admission – There are laws that prohibit you from having to take on the financial burden of tending to your loved one. Be mindful about what you sign, as some facilities will ask you to sign a “responsible party” document that looks more like an emergency contact form. A closer look may reveal, in small print, that you are actually financially responsible. This is an illegal practice.
Elder Evictions – Since bed space can be a premium, a care facility can try to unlawfully evict a resident and cite unlawful reasons as to why. The truth is there are only 6-reasons a care facility can remove a resident under the Nursing Home Reform Laws.
- The resident doesn’t pay.
- The resident doesn’t need further nursing home care.
- The resident is a threat or danger to others.
- The facility cannot meet the healthcare needs of what the resident requires.
- The resident is a health risk to others.
- The care facility is closing or going out of business.
Medicaid Doesn’t Pay For That – Some care facilities will suggest that there are services that Medicaid won’t pay for. This is, generally, not true. Medicaid recipients are just as worthy of care as residents who pay privately. Be sure to investigate what the facility is claiming if you feel that the claim is unjustified.
There are a number of other discrepancies in conduct that happen all the time in regards to nursing home care and what is or isn’t lawful. If you feel that the healthcare of your loved one is being mismanaged or an abuse situation is taking place, please call or connect with us today so we can start looking into the matter immediately.