Nursing Home Abuse And Neglect: Is Your Loved One A Victim? - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Nursing Home Abuse And Neglect: Is Your Loved One A Victim?

In World War II, they flew the great air missions, landed on the beaches and fought through six countries to free Europe from the clutches of an evil dictator.  They fought hand to hand in the Pacific, in places like Guadalcanal and Iwo Jima, to avenge the first attack ever on American soil.  At home they worked in factories to build tanks, airplanes and ships and rationed their food, fuel and clothes for four long years.  Television commentators and writers call them the “Greatest Generation.”  We know them better as our parents and grandparents.  It’s hard to believe, but the “Greatest Generation” is now 80 and older.

Those who made the great sacrifices for freedom and democracy now suffer from Alzheimer’s, dementia, debilitating arthritis, strokes, respiratory problems and other illnesses associated with their advanced age.  While many families honor their parents and grandparents by keeping them at home and watching over them, inevitably, a decision must sometimes be made to place these loved ones in a nursing home for skilled, long term care.

Unfortunately, after giving so much of themselves for the freedom of others, after raising their families and working their entire lives, members of the “Greatest Generation” are sometimes victims of abuse and neglect as nursing home residents.  National and state statistics prove many nursing homes lack adequate staff and personnel, fail to follow doctors’ orders, fail to monitor their residents’ skin conditions, fail to meet their residents’ dietary requirements and fail to provide mental and physical therapies.  In many instances, the law calls such oversights malpractice or negligence.  Nursing homes are made to answer for their failures in a court of law. 

Lasky Cooper Law is committed to protecting the rights of the “Greatest Generation” and is skilled and experienced in representing victims of nursing home negligence and abuse.  Our extensive and thorough case preparation begins with an extensive review of the complete nursing home chart plus all additional medical records from hospitals and doctors. We take the additional step of conducting a background check on the nursing home to determine whether they have neglected other residents, whether their license is at risk, or if they have received unsatisfactory inspection results from the federal or state government. We go even a step farther and review resident/staff ratios and the amount spent by the facility on your loved one’s medical needs and care.  We also utilize state-of-the-art computer technology to prove how the negligence of the nursing home caused injuries to the resident.  We develop comprehensive and persuasive PowerPoint computer programs so jurors, mediators or arbitrators can see the injuries, listen to witnesses and understand how the nursing home resident was neglected.  Our techniques of investigation and presentation have proven to be very effective.  Some recent recoveries for clients include:

  • $2,500,000.00 for vegetative stroke victim who lost both of his legs as a result of bed sores.
  • $400,000.00 for misreading dietary orders and failing to provide the resident adequate nutrition.
  • $300,000.00 for the improper placement of a feeding tube resulting in a serious and debilitating infection.
  • $300,000.00 for an end stage Alzheimer’s patient who fell from her wheelchair and broke her nose, hemorrhaging to death.
  • $300,000.00 for a resident who choked on scrambled eggs, which were not part of his diet.

Making the Decision

If you are looking for a nursing home for your loved one, here are a few suggestions to help you make an informed decision:

  • Ask the Administrator if the nursing home has liability insurance.  If not, find another nursing home.
  • Ask to tour the entire nursing home; the Administrator or home representative may only show you the well adorned lobby or an empty, recently cleaned dining room.
  • Ask who the medical director of the nursing home is, and be confident he will provide competent care to your loved one.
  • Ask about staff turnover.  The fact the nursing home employees feel compelled to look for other jobs may signal a big problem with the way the facility is run.  It also may signal the fact that your loved one may not receive continual care.
  • When touring the nursing home, ask to see the most recent government inspection results; under federal and state law, they must be made available upon your request.
  • Still have questions about the nursing home?  Check current and prior survey results at www.medicare.gov.  This website, sponsored by the federal government, lists present and past survey results.
  • Ask friends, family, church members or your loved one’s doctor if they know about the nursing home.  Many nursing homes develop a community reputation based on the experiences of others.

If you believe your loved one has been injured as a result of a nursing home’s inactions or actions, we stand ready to investigate the case and help you.  Some signs of nursing home abuse and neglect are:

  • Broken bones resulting from falling, being dropped or being improperly supervised.
  • Break downs in skin, forming blisters or ulcers.
  • The need for amputation of limbs.
  • Altered mental status.
  • Changes in blood sugar levels.
  • Unexplained weight loss.
  • Dehydration.

If you suspect your loved one has been abused or neglected, please call Attorney Brian E. Krapf or his assistant Ms. Mary Holloway, at 912-232-6423 or email BKrapf@LaskyCooperLaw.com  for a consultation or to schedule an appointment.

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