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The Tragic Side Of Nursing Home Malpractice 

Imagine trying to advocate for your loved one’s health and constantly being ignored. Knowing if medical staff members gave your concerns a thought, your loved one would still be alive. Or that medical staff you put your entire trust into completely neglects the health of your loved one. In cases like these a nursing home malpractice case may be necessary..

Lisa Howze knows this feeling all too well. Her mother was living in a nursing home in Durham, North Carolina. In the summer of 2019, it was discovered that Lisa’s mother, Palestine, had a bedsore. Her family was assured everything was under control. A year later, Lisa was told her mother’s bedsore became infected. Lisa’s mother went through rounds of intravenous antibiotics and surgery that removed rotting flesh and bone. No one told Lisa. What she did know was her mother needed to be admitted to a hospital. And she had been vocalizing her concerns with the nursing home to no avail. Out of desperation, Lisa contacted the state health department to file a complaint. Unfortunately, Palestine had died of reported negligence from the nursing home. 

Do you have a loved one living in a nursing care facility? Do you believe medical staff members there have acted negligently while looking after your family member and have caused them injuries? You may be eligible for compensation. The team at Hampton & King is equipped with nursing home malpractice lawyers who can determine if your case qualifies for medical negligence. Contact us now

Empty bed and wheelchair in nursing home.

Nursing Home Neglect

We’ve all heard a horror story or two about a nursing home not having their residents’ best interest at heart. From not addressing their concerns quickly to just handling them a little roughly, nursing home residents are vulnerable to poor care. Here are some common examples of nursing home neglect.

Hygiene Neglect

Unfortunately, many of the residents admitted into a nursing home are bedridden. They need assistance with normal, daily tasks. Staff members may be neglectful if they fail to:

  • Bathe residents in a timely manner
  • Change their bedsheets
  • Clean up their rooms properly
  • Provide them with a clean change of clothes when needed
  • Change soiled diapers on time

Basic Needs Neglect

There are the luxuries of life, and then there are basic needs. Health issues should not revoke a person’s right to basic needs – especially if they’re living in a facility made to look after them. Nursing home caregivers may fail to provide residents with basic living needs by:

  • Not providing enough food and water 
  • Preventing them from using the bathroom when needed
  • Leaving their living area too cold or too hot

Medical Neglect

Care for residents in a nursing home doesn’t just end at basic needs and hygiene. Keeping up with their health and providing adequate medical care is also a part of the job. Unfortunately, many medical malpractice lawsuits are against nursing homes. Caregivers and other staff members are neglectful if:

  • Not giving medication to patient’s on time (or a patient receives wrong medication)
  • Bedsores that don’t receive treatment
  • Ignoring wounds and other sites of injury, which often leads to infection
  • Not seeking the help of a hospital or emergency care when necessary

Your loved one has the right to living a life free from neglect. When a nursing home neglects these needs, it may result in injury or could even lead to death. There are laws enforced at both the state and federal level to ensure a nursing home meets standards and provides your loved one with basic needs and proper medical attention. Nursing home malpractice lawyers can help if these laws are broken and the standard of care is breached. 

Is It Abuse Or Medical Neglect?

Both neglect and abuse in any manner can have devastating results. But they aren’t the same. Abuse is intentional. What does that mean? An individual was acting in a specific manner to cause injury or serious pain to a resident. This can be either emotional or physical. Neglect is a form of abuse and usually is not intentional. However, a lack of action, or behaving below standard of care, can also have a serious impact on a resident’s wellbeing.

Medical malpractice cases involve neglect. Whether intentional or not, a staff member performing subpar can cause your loved one injury and other harmful risks. And that is not okay.

Nursing Home Factors That May Lead To Neglect

Why do we hear so many nursing home horror stories? There are certain reasons neglect in nursing homes occurs and here are some of the more common ones:

Understaffing

Most nursing homes, like most hospitals, have a certain number of occupied beds and rooms. What ends up happening is there are just not enough employees to look after each resident without sacrificing care. If one employee has to take care of a huge number of residents, they just can’t put in the time to properly care for each one. And that’s when little mistakes happen and neglect occurs. Medication isn’t given on time or the wrong mediation is given. A resident sits in a soiled diaper for far too long. An injury is not noticed right away.

Improper training

Every individual working in the healthcare field knows one thing: they must act with compassion. But if some staff members are not properly trained, they aren’t doing their job right. And this could often lead to neglect.

Lack of supervision

It’s easy to want to “take things into your own hands.” And without supervision, many employees tend to do exactly that. Unfortunately, this could mean that workers carry out treatment that’s not needed or act in a way that could cause more harm than not. 

Filing A Malpractice Lawsuit Against A Nursing Home

Nursing homes carrying out neglectful care can be, and should be, held liable and accountable. Harming residents is never okay. If you’re thinking about filing a claim against such a facility, you have to ensure your case shows these elements:

  • The nursing home caregiver/healthcare professional owed a certain duty of care to your loved one
  • The individual, or group of people, failed to follow the standard of care and breached their duty. 
  • The breach of duty caused direct harm to your loved one and resulted in injury, pain, and perhaps even death

This last point is the hardest to prove in a legal case. The nursing home you’re going up against will likely do and say anything in their power to avoid blame. They may even mention the injuries your loved one sustained were bound to happen – whether they were at home, in a different facility, or anywhere else in the world. That’s why having a good team by your side makes all the difference. 

Caregiver holds elderly patient's hand.

Nursing Home Malpractice Lawyers Can Help

Working in most healthcare environments is a high-stress job. Nursing homes are no different. However, that doesn’t mean neglect and abuse are okay. Your elderly loved one deserves respect, care, and proper medical attention. 

Our nursing home malpractice lawyers can help you navigate your case against a care facility. The legal team at Hampton & King may be able to fight for you and your family’s rights. We will take every necessary step to ensure you receive the justice and compensation for the injuries or harm your loved one sustained.

Contact us for a free, zero-hassle consultation. We want your voice to be heard and want nursing homes that act neglectfully to be held accountable.