Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Los Angeles
In California, the law requires nursing facilities to provide elderly and dependent residents with appropriate care and treatment. While many nursing homes meet this obligation, others are operated by companies and individuals who put profits ahead of their residents’ needs. Eager to maintain their profit margin, they hire cheaply, which often means their staff members lack proper training.
In order to cut back costs even more, a great many nursing homes are understaffed. There is no excuse for abuse or neglect, however. If you or a loved one has been the victim of nursing home neglect, you need an experienced and compassionate attorney by your side. The law firm of J&Y fights to protect elders from abuse and neglect.
Nursing Home Neglect
While elder abuse in a nursing facility is easy to detect, neglect is often not as apparent. The Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act defines elder neglect as the negligent failure of any individual having care or custody of an elder or dependent adult to provide a standard of care that a reasonable person would provide under the same circumstances. This includes failure to assist in personal hygiene or in the provision of food, clothing or shelter, failure to provide medical care for physical and mental health needs, failure to protect the elder from health and safety hazards, and failure to prevent malnutrition and dehydration (California Welfare and Institutions Code §15610.57).
Types of Injuries Caused by Neglect
In nursing homes, elder neglect that results in a variety of injuries or illnesses is often caused by poor care or inadequate staffing. Such neglect can result in:
Many nursing home residents are prone to falls that can result in permanent injury or death. When an elderly individual enters a nursing home, the facility is required to design a care plan that includes a risk assessment to determine the assistance the resident needs to move around safely. Falls can be due to wet floors, poor lighting, poorly fitted wheelchairs or improper bed heights, but too often the underlying cause of falls is negligent caregivers who fail to sufficiently supervise residents. Falls can be prevented in a variety of ways and nursing home facilities must ensure there is adequate staff on hand to help residents walk and move around.
Pressure sores, or bed sores, are also common in nursing homes and often result from inattentive care. Not only can bedsores be extremely painful, they can also lead to life-threatening complications. These injuries can be prevented, however, by regularly turning residents, keeping them clean and dry and ensuring they are well hydrated and properly nourished. A well-run nursing facility will also use the latest technological advances in cushions and mattresses.
Wandering or Elopement
Residents of nursing homes who become memory-impaired as a result of Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia need special care. In a nursing home, elopement occurs when an unsupervised resident wanders away from the facility, putting themselves or others at risk of bodily harm.
Malnutrition or Dehydration
Nursing facilities have a duty to ensure that their residents are provided with adequate nutrition and sufficient hydration. Failure to do so, even for a short period of time, can result in undue pain and suffering, and even death. Any illness or death that may be the result of malnutrition or dehydration is considered to be negligence.
In California, victims of elder neglect have powerful legal recourse to recover past and future medical expenses, lost wages, damages for pain and suffering and attorneys’ fees. In addition, misdemeanor or felony charges may also be brought.
Preventing Nursing Home Neglect in California
The law firm of J&Y fights for victims of elder neglect in Los Angeles County, San Diego County, Orange County, San Bernardino County, San Francisco County and Sacramento County and in all of California. Our experienced attorneys will conduct a thorough investigation of the facility’s medical file to determine whether the required plan of care has been followed and updated as needed. If the plan was not followed, we will take the necessary legal action and ensure that appropriate care and treatment are provided.
Because nursing home neglect is harder to identify than abuse, it is important to act quickly since the law imposes a time limit for bringing a personal injury lawsuit. At J&Y Law, we believe that every elderly person deserves dignity and respect. We will help you obtain compensation for pain and suffering and put your mind at ease. Call our office today for a free evaluation of your case at (877) 735-7035.