Irvine Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Lawyers
Choosing a nursing home in which to place a loved one can be a stressful and challenging process. After struggling to find the right place for your loved one, the idea of them suffering from Irvine nursing home abuse or neglect must seem unfathomable. Unfortunately, these types of incidents do occur and many instances of nursing home abuse go unreported for fear of embarrassment or retaliation. It is important to understand the critical issues surrounding nursing home abuse and neglect so patients and their families better understand their legal rights.
There are many forms of abuse that may occur at an Irvine nursing home. In addition to physical abuse, there is emotional abuse, financial fraud, sexual abuse and neglect. All of these terrible forms of abuse and neglect can have a devastating affect on victims and their families.
The Signs and Symptoms of Abuse
Many elderly victims are physically weak and suffering injuries in falling accidents is rather common for seniors. It is important to understand that it is not common for someone to regularly suffer bruises and broken bones while in the care of a specialized nursing facility. Signs of physical abuse may include unnatural bruising, bleeding, broken bones and changes in personality.
Unlike physical abuse, there are very few visual symptoms to look for in cases involving emotional abuse. Victims may feel embarrassed by the way they are treated and refuse to see visiting family members. In some cases, victims of emotional abuse may become easily agitated, quiet, withdrawn, depressed or angry.
Nursing Home Neglect
Nursing homes are legally required to provide adequate care to their residents. This includes paying attention to them and making sure they get the nutrition and the medical care they need. They must make sure the right medications are given and that they are provided the level of care recommended by a medical professional. Signs of Irvine nursing home neglect include malnutrition, dehydration, bedsores, bruises from restraints, overmedication or chemical restraint and a general lack of hygiene.
What to do in the Event of Abuse of Neglect
If your loved one told you that he or she was abused or neglected, the first step to take is to determine what occurred and why. You may want to request his or her medical records for signs of recent injuries. You may want to speak with nearby residents and see if they have concerns as well. If the issue is with a specific staff member or the quality of services provided, talk to the administrator first. If the matter is still not rectified, you may want to contact an ombudsman or an attorney to take appropriate action against the negligent nursing home.
In California, you are legally required to report cases of elder abuse to the authorities. There are a number of organizations and services that should be notified. You should reach out to your county Adult Protective Services (APS) agency. You may also want to contact the Licensing and Certification Program of the California Department of Health Services (DHS) and the Long-Term Care Ombudsman's Office of the California Department of Aging. You may even notify the California Attorney General Bureau of Medi-Cal Fraud and Elder Abuse.
How an Attorney Can Help
Reporting Irvine nursing home abuse is a good way to ensure that a care facility is held criminally liable for their actions. It will not, however, result in financial compensation for the losses the victim or the victim’s family has suffered. The skilled Irvine nursing home abuse and neglect lawyers at Bisnar Chase Personal Injury Attorneys can help victims and their families determine if they have a case. In cases where neglect or abuse has taken place, punitive damages may also be awarded in addition to compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, emotional distress and other related damages. We have more than three decades of experience fighting for the rights of injured victims and holding wrongdoers accountable. Please contact us to find out how we can help you and your family.