Corpus Christi Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

Nursing Home Abuse

When a family places a loved one in a nursing home, the family expects that their relative will receive quality care and kind treatment. The last thing that they would expect is that their loved one will become a victim of abuse or neglect. Unfortunately, there have been many instances of nursing home abuse throughout Texas, including physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

If you suspect that your loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse, it is important to know your rights and how to hold the facility accountable. Your loved one may have the right to financial compensation. Filing a nursing home abuse lawsuit can focus attention on a problem and prevent other nursing home residents from suffering similar treatment. The nursing home abuse attorneys at Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C. pursue injury claims on behalf of people in Texas who have been hurt as the result of abuse in nursing homes, assisted living and other elder care facilities.

Signs of Nursing Home Neglect—Senior Citizen Abuse

Nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are designed to ensure that older people are well cared for and are protected from any physical and mental infirmities. However, there are unfortunate cases where residents are physically, mentally or sexually abused by staff members.

The signs of possible neglect or abuse that family members should be alert for include:

  • Bedsores or decubitus ulcers
  • Bruising
  • Cuts and open wounds
  • Broken bones
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Poor nutrition or unexplained weight loss
  • Poor hygiene
  • Unsanitary conditions
  • Sudden changes in behavior or habits
  • Depression

Nursing home residents have a right to be treated with dignity and respect and to be free from mental, physical and verbal abuse, financial exploitation and physical restraints. Restraints can only be used if authorized by the patient’s doctor with specific instructions specifying the conditions of their use.

The nursing home abuse lawyers at Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C. understand the signs of nursing home abuse and neglect and have helped families hold facilities accountable for mistreatment of residents.

elderly woman suffering from neglect

Nursing homes can be held accountable for abuse or neglect through:

  • Bedsores or decubitus ulcers
  • Bruising
  • Cuts and open wounds

A civil lawsuit filed on behalf of the nursing home resident is a separate step intended to hold a nursing home financially accountable for abuse or neglect. It is independent of any criminal prosecution related to abuse or neglect. Our attorneys have recovered significant compensation for nursing home residents who have been harmed by abuse or neglect.

The nursing home neglect lawyers at Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C. provide experienced representation for people who have been harmed as a result of abuse at nursing homes, assisted living communities and other long-term care facilities.

Call our Corpus Christi or McAllen office toll free at 844-426-3000.

Types of Nursing Home Abuse

Nursing home abuse and neglect occur because staff are poorly qualified, inadequately trained or stretched thin, creating added stress on the workers who are present. Neglect and abuse occur because residents are dependent on their caregivers and may be reluctant or fearful of reporting the mistreatment. In some cases, nursing homes do a poor job of screening job applicants and hire a nursing home worker with a history of violence or sexual misconduct.

The types of abuse that can occur at nursing homes, assisted living facilities and other elder care facilities include:

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse includes hitting, kicking, slapping, choking, pinching, or any form of corporal punishment of a nursing home resident. Nursing homes are responsible for residents’ physical safety. Staff who are not adequately trained to handle difficult patients or patients with Alzheimer’s may become angry and lash out at patients or be physically abusive. Unexplained cuts, lacerations, bruises, burns, or broken bones may be signs of physical abuse by a staff member.

Sexual Abuse

Elderly nursing home residents, many of whom have dementia or Alzheimer’s, may be sexually assaulted by other residents or by caretakers who violate their positions of trust. Nursing homes have a duty to protect residents from sexual assault, sexual harassment, sexual coercion and to screen employees who have a history of sexual misconduct. Residents who are victims of sexual abuse may be ashamed and reluctant to report the abuse. Unfortunately, long-term facilities often disregard or fail to investigate complaints of sexual abuse until a perpetrator has victimized multiple residents.

Neglect

Neglect involves the failure of a caregiver to provide services including medical services to a long-term care resident. Common issues associated with nursing home neglect include untreated bedsores, malnutrition, dehydration, inadequate sanitation, soiled bed linens, lack of medical care, and injuries caused by preventable accidents.

Psychological Abuse

A common type of psychological abuse involves verbal attacks, taunting, intimidation, humiliating acts that cause distress or anguish, seclusion, and threats of punishment of a nursing home resident. A resident who is being verbally abused or harassed may be fearful of reporting the abuse.

Financial Exploitation

Some nursing home residents may need or want help handling their finances. But a family member or nursing home may not take control of a senior’s money without their express permission. Financial exploitation involves a caretaker’s illegal use of a nursing home resident’s bank accounts or property for personal gain. In situations where the nursing home or a family member is authorized to oversee a senior’s finances, the nursing home resident still has a right to decide how his or her money will be managed and to receive a full financial accounting. Unexplained withdrawals from bank accounts, transfer of property or changes to a will may be warning signs of financial exploitation. If you suspect your loved one is being exploited financially, seek the guidance of a knowledgeable Texas nursing home abuse lawyer.

Any complaint by a nursing home resident of physical, psychological or sexual abuse should be taken seriously.

If your loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse in Texas, it is important to know your rights and how to hold the nursing home facility accountable. It may be possible to recover compensation for your loved one’s medical bills and other expenses related to the abuse or neglect. For more information regarding your legal options, please contact a nursing home abuse lawyer at Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C. We are committed to helping families protect those members who can no longer protect themselves

Common Ailments and Signs of Nursing Home Neglect

Given how the immune system gradually deteriorates over time, senior citizens are more vulnerable to certain ailments, illnesses and infections. This includes common problems like pneumonia and the flu. However, many of these ailments are preventable and can be treated successfully with proper medical care.

  • Bedsores/pressure ulcers
  • Broken bones
  • Dehydration
  • Malnutrition
  • Pneumonia
  • Hypertension
  • Contractures
  • Urinary tract infections

Texas nursing homes are supposed to provide prompt professional nursing care and medical services to residents. Since most of the facilities have doctors on call, patients should not have to suffer or wait for treatment. These ailments may be indicators that a resident is being neglected.

If you feel your loved one is being neglected or abused, it is important to speak with an experienced advocate.

Call toll free at 844-426-3000 to speak with an attorney in our Corpus Christi or McAllen office.

Beyond Neglect:
Nursing Home Abuse Wrongful Deaths

If nursing home staff fail to provide adequate care for a resident, the nursing home facility may be liable for a resident’s preventable death due to neglect or abuse. For example, a preventable fall that causes a patient’s death may be caused by negligent supervision and may be the basis of a wrongful death lawsuit. Nursing homes have a legal duty to protect residents’ welfare and safety.

The facility may be liable if a nursing home resident dies of neglect or is killed as a result of the intentional acts of another resident.

Each nursing home wrongful death case must be evaluated based on the specific facts involved. The family of a nursing home resident who died due to neglect or abuse may be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the victim. Bringing a wrongful death lawsuit can focus needed attention on safety issues at a nursing home and prevent other residents from sustaining similar fatal injuries.

elderly woman receiving comfort after abuse

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nursing home patient seeking help

There is no obligation attached to having a discussion with one of our experienced nursing home abuse lawyers if you suspect that your loved one is a victim of abuse or neglect.

You can count on our experienced nursing home injury attorneys to be dedicated advocates for your elderly loved one and your family. Call Herrman & Herrman P.L.L.C. to obtain a free review of your situation and to discuss your legal rights if nursing home abuse is suspected.