St. Louis County Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
When properly maintained, nursing homes provide an invaluable service to the elderly and their families. Sadly, some nursing homes fail to provide the care and support afforded to their residents. In some cases, nursing home staff have been known to take advantage of residents, both physically and financially. Those who engage in such carelessness should be held accountable for their negligence.
If you or a loved one suffered injury while under the care of a nursing home, you should contact a compassionate attorney as soon as possible. A St. Louis County nursing home abuse lawyer can work to investigate the incident, prove liability onto negligent nursing home administrations, and protect your rights during settlement negotiations and at trial.
Indicators of Nursing Home Abuse
It is a sad fact that abuses are common in St. Louis County nursing homes. Unfortunately, many residents who are the victims of this abuse are unable or unwilling to speak out on their own behalf. As a result, it is often the responsibility of friends or family members to recognize common signs of abuse. These may include:
- Sudden changes in mood or demeanor
- Unexplained bruises or cuts
- A sudden change in overall health
- A lack of social engagement
In the likelihood that victims may be too intimidated to address the abuse they experienced; families should seek the services of a St. Louis County elder abuse lawyer who could hold the nursing home accountable for the harm they caused
The Obligations of Nursing Homes to Prevent Abuse
All nursing homes in St. Louis County have an absolute duty to protect their residents from all foreseeable harm. Naturally, this includes preventing their employees from abusing residents. These abuses can happen in one of two main ways.
Abuse can be the result of willful neglect. This occurs when a staff member knows that a resident needs care but refuses to administer it. This can include instances of:
- Failure to provide adequate food or water
- Not taking a resident to the toilet
- Not bathing a resident often enough
- Not allowing a resident to socialize
- Keeping a resident from contacting friends or family
What is Intentional Abuse?
The other class of abuse is intentional acts designed to harm a resident. Staff members may use unapproved restraint methods, may yell or berate a resident, or may strike out at a patient as a means of retaliation or discipline. Even worse, some workers in nursing homes see their jobs as residing in a position of power and take advantage of this position to feel superior through physical abuse.
How Could Someone Prove Negligence Against a Nursing Home?
Negligence is a common cause of action that plaintiffs may use to demand damages from at-fault defendants. More specifically, nursing homes are responsible for the actions of their employees through a relationship known as agency. If an employee commits a criminal act, such as physically striking a resident, that employee is criminally liable. However, the nursing home may also be civilly liable for negligent hiring or improper training procedures. A St. Louis County nursing home abuse lawyer may be able to help residents and their family members make a legal case for damages after an incident of abuse.
A St. Louis County Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Could Fight for You and Your Loved Ones
Every person who is a resident in a St. Louis County nursing home has the right to feel safe and secure in their living situation. This includes the right to receive skilled nursing care, but also to be free from any intentional abuses that result from physical attacks or willful neglect. Sadly, these incidents are all too common.
Nursing homes have an obligation to provide a safe environment. However, many nursing homes fail by not properly screening potential employees or not providing proper training to prevent abuses. This makes both an abuser and the nursing home liable for any damage that results.
A St. Louis County nursing home abuse lawyer may be able to help when nursing home abuse results in an injury. They can work to gather essential evidence concerning the incident, to evaluate your legal options, and to pursue those options with vigor. Schedule a consultation to begin discussing your options today.