Medical Malpractice in Nursing Homes
Medical malpractice that occurs in a nursing home or care facility for the elderly is often referred to as nursing home malpractice or negligence. Nursing home malpractice may also include neglect, when patients are not provided with proper nutrition, hygiene or medical care.
Medical malpractice and elder abuse are definite concerns throughout the United States. In fact, it is estimated that one in every three nursing home facilities is guilty of some form of neglect, negligence, wrongdoing or malpractice occurring. Filing a nursing home malpractice claim or lawsuit can help stop this situation from continuing to occur, as well as enabling a victim to obtain compensation for the injuries and losses suffered.
Nursing Home Malpractice Has Serious Consequences
Whether or not a nursing home provides a full range of medical services, they have an obligation to provide proper treatment in the services they do offer. This may include properly administering medication, assisting residents with day-to-day activities such as bathing, toileting, walking and eating. For bed-ridden residents, nursing home staff have an obligation to provide proper attention in order to prevent the development of bedsores. In facilities that provide hospice care or medical treatment, they need to ensure patients are not only given the attention they deserve but that the level of care they receive is up to accepted standards.
The quality of care received in nursing homes is not always what it should be. When malpractice occurs, an elderly resident may be left suffering from debilitating bedsores, may be overmedicated, may receive the wrong medication, or may unnecessarily suffer from a preventable or treatable injury or illness. A resident may experience discomfort or severe pain or may be left seriously injured. Some forms of nursing home malpractice may even lead to the wrongful death of a patient.
Elderly residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities have a right to be treated with respect and compassion. They have a right to receive a standard level of medical treatment and general care, including proper nutrition and a safe, comfortable and clean living environment. They should be properly supervised and cared for by the staff at the nursing home. When this does not occur, the elderly resident or his or her family may be able to take legal action. A civil lawsuit may be filed against the facility where the malpractice or mistreatment has occurred, enabling the resident to seek financial damages for the injuries, losses and expenses suffered. Taking legal action of this kind can also increase awareness of this serious problem and can serve to hold the responsible nursing home accountable for their conduct.
For help with a nursing home malpractice claim, find a medical malpractice lawyernear you.