You have rights regardless of how much you pay for residence in a nursing home. Nursing homes are responsible for keeping residents safe and tending to their needs. Unfortunately, nursing home staff and administrators fail in their duties and injure or harm the residents.
Nursing home abuse takes many forms, and the parties responsible should be held accountable for their actions. There are many types of abuse that residents can suffer other than physical. You must contact the South Memphis nursing home abuse attorney from Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC if your loved one is suffering.
Nursing Home Abuse in South Memphis
Nursing homes are unique because the patients are there 24 hours a day. Any action or inaction that leads to mistreatment or injury is abuse. Aside from physical abuse, there are mental, emotional, financial, and sexual.
Neglect is another harm that nursing home residents in South Memphis suffer from. Psychological abuse is 11.8% of cases, with financial at 3.8% and 2.2% for sexual abuse. If you suspect abuse or neglect occurs at your nursing home facility, speak to our South Memphis nursing home abuse lawyers.
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Categories of Nursing Home Abuse
Since physical abuse is the most obvious, many families are only alert for those signs. However, knowing the other types of abuse and what to look for to keep your loved ones safe is crucial.
Physical abuse involves kicking, hitting, shoving, punching, tripping, or burning a resident. The abuse can be inflicted by staff, visitors, employees, other patients, and third parties. Administering drugs that are unnecessary or not prescribed can also constitute abuse.
Sexual abuse is when someone engages in unwanted and non-consensual sexual activity. Sometimes it is forced, and other times the perpetrator takes advantage of the patient’s mental incapacity. Most nursing home abuse cases involve physical or sexual abuse.
Although it is widespread, psychological abuse is harder to prove or detect. It involves staff name-calling, social isolation, intimidation, and verbal threats. Financial abuse involves theft, fraud, and exploitation of the resident’s finances by a caregiver.
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Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Identifying the signs of nursing home abuse is challenging, and sometimes the abuse can go on for long periods because the signs are hidden. When caregivers intentionally abuse a patient, they take extra precautions to cover up their actions. However, you can look for subtle signs of abuse to keep your loved one safe.
Trust your gut, and if you feel something is wrong, it likely is. Look for these signs of abuse:
- Physical signs:
- Mental and emotional abuse:
- Behavioral changes
- Avoiding social activities
- Withdrawing from groups
- Financial abuse:
- Large withdrawals
- Unexplained spending
- Adding authorized users
- Changing beneficiaries
Suppose caregivers and staff do not want you alone with your loved one. That is a sign that there is something nefarious happening. You have entrusted the facility and its staff with your loved one’s care.
You should have access to your loved one without someone looking over your shoulder or trying to intimidate the resident.
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Liability and Your Claim
The most significant aspect of your lawsuit is determining liability. Finding who is liable means discovering who you can sue and who should pay for your losses. The perpetrator is clearly responsible, but that is not the only one.
Nursing home facilities must ensure their patients are taken care of and that they conduct background checks on their staff. The facility can also be liable for abuse because they have obligations to its residents. Additionally, if they knew about the abuse and did nothing to stop it, they are also liable for injuries.
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Reporting Nursing Home Abuse
If the situation is life-threatening, you must call emergency services immediately. It is vital to report nursing home abuse to any authorities that can help investigate and prevent further harm. If unsure what to do, you can speak to a nursing home abuse attorney in South Memphis, TN, for guidance.
Other sources to report nursing home abuse include:
- Adult protective services
- Long-term care ombudsman
- National Council on Aging
- Local elder advocacy groups
Many resources are available for nursing home residents and older adults throughout South Memphis. If you suspect nursing home abuse, you must take swift action because your loved one’s life can depend on it. Many families will start the reporting process with the administration in the facility before taking additional steps.
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You can seek monetary damages if someone has suffered abuse in a nursing home or long-term care facility. Compensation relevant to your case will depend on what happened and other circumstances. Most cases can lead to economic and noneconomic damages but work with a nursing home abuse lawyer in South Memphis, TN, to determine the compensation relevant to your lawsuit.
Examples of nursing home abuse damages include:
- Medical costs: expenses for treating the injury like hospitalizations, surgery, medication, and physical therapy.
- Pain and suffering: physical and mental anguish caused by the injury.
- Punitive damages are only awarded in cases of gross negligence and intend to punish the defendant.
- Relocation services: the costs of relocating the older adult to another facility and out of harm’s way.
Move Quickly Before Time Runs Out
You want swift justice, and that means moving quickly. However, another reason you must move swiftly is because of the statute of limitations in Tennessee.
You will have one year from the date you discover the abuse to file a lawsuit. A year seems like a long time, but it is a short time to collect evidence and file a lawsuit. Talk to our nursing home abuse attorneys as soon as possible to get started and fight for justice.
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The elderly deserve to live their best life with care and compassion. They should not be taken advantage of or abused when they enter a nursing home. This is difficult because the people you trust have broken that trust, leading to injuries.
Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC, has been helping families and loved ones since 1970. Our South Memphis nursing home abuse attorneys can help you during the process. Get started by scheduling a free case evaluation today.