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Randy Appleton
Randy Appleton
Attorney • (800) 752-0042

Spotting Nursing Home Abuse

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In our busy world where most professionals and their families are too busy with their work and businesses, the elderly members of their families are often left in the care of nursing homes. This reality has, in fact, led to the increase in the number of nursing homes being put up in urban areas and a rise in employment opportunities for caregivers.

Unfortunately, all is not well in these nursing homes. Abuses exist in these homes for the elderly and they can go undetected or unreported. However, abuses have continuously been reported in recent years inside these institutions that were supposedly put up to provide care to the old folks. It is a sad fact that many elderly residents have been the subject of abuse by their supposed caregivers. Abuse cases have caused fear instead among families who have put their trust in these nursing homes to take care of their elderly loved ones.

There are 15,000 nursing homes in the U.S. that accommodate more than 1.5 million people. These homes are divided into the for-profit ones, the non-profit nursing homes and the government operated ones. They are inspected once every year to check if they meet government standards to enable them to take part in the Medicaid and Medicare programs.

In 2008, a total of 37,150 complaints were received by inspectors and one-fifth of them involved abuse and neglect of patients. Additionally, a review of state inspection records in 2001 showed that some 5,283 nursing homes were cited for abuse violations. Reports say these abuses take the form of causing physical harm, verbal and sexual abuse or even death to the old residents such as punching, kicking and choking them. These abuses normally happen when nursing assistants are angered by the slow actions, awkwardness and clumsiness of their patients. Abuses can also be inflicted by a fellow resident who may have had a history of violent behavior or a criminal record in the past.

There had been cases of physical and sexual abuses in several nursing homes in the U.S. and a number of them have been shut down due to this problem. Government officials have already ordered a more rigid background check on nursing home residents with previous criminal history.

Anyone facing these proplems in nursing homes can seek the help of nursing home abuse lawyers. These lawyers are knowledgeable about the signs of abuse among the elderly people and the steps to take to get just compensation for the sufferings caused by nursing home staff or fellow residents. They can also offer tips on how to prevent future abuses.

Abuse that causes Physical injury and emotional can be cause for filing a personal injury lawsuit against a caregiver, nursing home or fellow resident. A legal action is the right thing to do to claim compensation for the injured person and to reform the conduct of the people and institution involved that caused the injury. An abuse inflicted on an elderly individual can only happen because of negligence on the part of the caregiver and the nursing home itself.

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper,Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm is based in Virginia (VA), near the NE North Carolina (NC) border and handles car, truck, railroad, and medical negligence cases and more. Our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard, Norfolk Injuryboard, and Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard as a pro bono public information service. Lawyers licensed in: VA, NC, SC, WV, DC, KY.

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