Nursing home abuse is deplorably common in the United States. According to a 2009 survey from the Department of Justice, 11 percent of senior citizens reported experiencing mistreatment. That might sound low, but there are more than 40 million people in the country aged 65 and older – which means approximately 4.4 million suffered abuse. If you or a loved one was injured due to neglect or abuse at a nursing home, contact Morris Bart, LLC. A New Orleans injury attorney will evaluate your case and help you make a personal injury claim against the at-fault staff member or facility. If your family member died, then you may have grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit. Call 800-537-8185 to discuss your legal options in a free initial consultation. Read on to learn the answers to four FAQs about nursing home abuse in Louisiana:
- What Is Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse is any intentional or negligent act by a caregiver or any other individual that causes harm or a risk of harm to an elderly person. Nursing home abuse takes many forms such as:
- Physical abuse;
- Sexual abuse;
- Financial exploitation;
- And emotional abuse.
- What Are Common Causes of Nursing Home Abuse?
Despite laws aimed at preventing the mistreatment of nursing home residents, elder abuse is alarmingly common in the United States. The growth of the senior citizen population has increased the demand for nursing homes, but many of these facilities are understaffed or their employees receive poor training, which leads to neglect. Sometimes nursing home abuse is intentional – for example, staff members may coerce residents to give them money. Alternatively, a nursing home employee may physically abuse a resident to get him or her to cooperate.
- What Are Common Effects of Nursing Home Abuse?
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It’s easy to associate elder abuse with physical beatings or unnecessary restraint. However, the effects of abuse extend beyond cuts, bruises and other observable injuries. Some victims suffer potentially deadly infections such as gastrointestinal infections, urinary tract infections or bacterial pneumonia. Medication mistakes can cause adverse reactions, and negligence can lead to poor hygiene, dehydration and persistent discomfort.
- How Should I Respond to Elder Abuse?
If you suspect a family member or another nursing home resident is suffering abuse or neglect, you must report the problem immediately. In fact, according to Louisiana Law (R.S. 15:1504), it is illegal not to report exploitation, abuse or neglect of vulnerable adults. If the person is in immediate danger, call the police. You should also contact Adult/Elderly Protective Services by calling 1-888-810-1819. Then, contact a personal-injury attorney to find out if you or your family member has grounds for a claim against the at-fault staff member or facility. Nursing home abuse can cause medical complications that are expensive to treat, but you may be able to recover compensation for health-care bills and non-economic damages. A New Orleans injury lawyer from Morris Bart, LLC will aggressively represent your interests. Call 800-537-8185 to schedule a free consultation.
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