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At some point in time, many families must make the difficult decision to place their aging loved ones in a nursing home. When making the decision, families oftentimes spend hours carefully researching potential facilities. Families need to know that the facility they choose will provide the highest level of care to ensure their loved ones can maintain a safe and healthy lifestyle with access to the resources and care they require.
Unfortunately, Solana Beach nursing homes may fail to properly supervise their employees or don’t set in place the policies and procedures needed to provide the care that you or your loved ones deserve.
If you have a loved one who suffered negligence in a nursing home setting, an experienced Solana Beach nursing home abuse attorney can help you understand your loved one’s rights. Experienced Solana Beach personal injury attorneys regularly fight for the rights of injured victims to seek the compensation they are entitled to. Contact Gomez Trial Attorneys to schedule a free consultation and case evaluation.
Nursing home residents remain more vulnerable and suffer higher rates of abuse and negligence than their peers of similar ages and capabilities who remain in the community. Yet defining nursing home negligence is difficult because it can come in many different forms and vary from one situation to the next.
At a fundamental level, nursing home residents deserve a level of care that enables them to maintain a high quality of life, despite the natural physical and mental deterioration associated with aging. Unfortunately, in some nursing homes, caregivers may be unqualified or understaffed, and as a result, fail to provide even the most basic services.
Nursing home neglect may occur for a variety of reasons. Understaffed facilities are a major contributing factor to neglect in nursing homes across the United States. When there is an inadequate number of caregivers for the number of residents at a facility, all residents may suffer from the staff’s inability to provide an adequate level of care.
Nursing homes commonly experience high turnover among their employees. A steady rotation of new employees and poor communication among staff can make it difficult to track employee performance. Newly hired caregivers frequently receive inadequate training. Others, however, may consciously choose to neglect their job duties because the expectations created by the workload are unattainable. Inadequate training and high expectations can result in a lower standard of care for all residents.
Many seniors, especially those who suffer from Alzheimer’s and dementia, prove to be more vulnerable to physical neglect than their more able-bodied or able-minded peers. Physical neglect can come in many different forms. Seniors experiencing Alzheimer’s or dementia may not immediately recognize they are being neglected, or in the worst cases, might not recognize signs of neglect at all.
Some common forms of physical neglect include:
Signs of physical neglect may not be readily apparent, particularly if the nursing home staff takes measures to hide signs of neglect when they anticipate a resident will have visitors. Family members should pay careful attention when visiting, including questioning their loved ones about their experience at the facility and the level of care provided by nursing home staff.
As a natural consequence of aging, many elderly individuals encounter a variety of health problems, many of which require regular treatment and medication. Nursing home caregivers are responsible for providing a high standard of medical care to address each resident’s individual needs. Staff must ensure residents are present at appointments, arrange for treatment providers to visit the facility when necessary, and ensure residents receive recommended medications.
Some common forms of medical neglect may include:
Loved ones may notice several signs of medical neglect in nursing home residents, for example, signs of untreated injuries with no injury-report. Residents that are not receiving their prescribed medications may show worsened symptoms of diseases or conditions that were successfully controlled before entering the nursing home.
Social isolation can contribute to physical and medical problems for seniors. Seniors who feel isolated from friends and loved ones may suffer substantial cognitive and physical decline. Many seniors, particularly those residing far away from their loved ones, rely on their caregivers and other residents in the nursing home for companionship. Unfortunately, in some nursing homes, especially those with inadequate staff, caregivers may not properly attend to the residents’ emotional needs.
Staff may emotionally neglect residents when they:
Loved ones may find that a senior suffering from emotional neglect appears socially withdrawn. Socially isolated residents may seem distant or uncomfortable and show a lack of interest in engaging with visitors.
If you suspect a loved one has suffered neglect in a Solana Beach nursing home, you should consider consulting an experienced nursing home neglect attorney as soon as possible. Experience attorneys can provide critical assistance to families in managing a neglect claim on their loved one’s behalf.
For example, an attorney may:
Many people want to know how much compensation their loved ones can expect following a clear case of neglect in a nursing home.
However, the amount of compensation an injured party may receive depends on:
Nursing home facilities and the staff have a duty to provide a high standard of care to all residents. When nursing homes fail to provide the required level of care, including instances of neglect or abuse, they are responsible for any resulting damages. In some cases, other individuals or organizations may share liability for the neglect experienced in a nursing home.
When appropriate, an experienced personal injury attorney can investigate the nursing home and learn whether any other parties share liability for an injured resident’s losses.
Deciding to place a loved one in a nursing care facility is a long process and a difficult choice for many families. Some want to take care of the elders they love at home, but circumstances make it impossible. In some situations, family members who put their loved ones in a nursing home feel guilt for not providing private care. Yet, many wonderful facilities exist that provide excellent care and a safe and comfortable place for your loved one to call home.
Unfortunately, other nursing homes, nurses, and caregivers do not provide the standard of care that our elders deserve. If your parent, grandparent, or another elder you love has suffered injuries from nursing home negligence, you likely feel angry, upset, and overwhelmed. Consult a nursing home negligence lawyer at Gomez Trial Attorneys as soon as possible. Our skilled attorneys can review your claim and advise you of the best course of action for you and your family.
The answers to the following frequently asked questions about nursing home negligence in Solana Beach provide information about types of nursing home negligence, taking legal action to hold facilities and caregivers accountable, nursing home resident rights, and more.
Nursing home negligence is a broad term that encompasses a wide range of actions and failures that physically or emotionally injure nursing home residents. In the most severe nursing home negligence cases, residents face life-threatening injuries that can lead to death. Nursing home negligence can occur at an individual level (e.g., negligence or abuse by a nurse or nursing assistant) or at the administrative level.
Examples of nursing home negligence that often serve as grounds for a Solana Beach nursing home lawsuit include:
Several nursing care facilities serve the Solana Beach area, some of which are in Encinitas, Cardiff by the Sea, and the Del Mar area of San Diego. If you are looking for information about violations to choose the right nursing home or assisted living facility for the elder you love, or if you want to find out if the Solana Beach facility where your loved one resides has violations, you need to know about the health violations in the following two Solana Beach area nursing homes.
Brookdale Carmel Valley. Located in the Del Mar Heights area of San Diego near Solana Beach, Brookdale Carmel Valley has had almost 40 deficiencies in recent years, including 11 health citations, which seems particularly high considering the facility only has 45 beds.
Details about deficiencies in the facility’s most recent health inspection report include:
Brookdale Carmel Valley also received more than 10 complaints in the last few years. Complaints recorded with state inspectors include:
Encinitas Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. Encinitas Nursing and Rehabilitation Center is a 99-room nursing care facility with 25 deficiencies in recent years, including 11 health citations. Medicare’s inspection summary reports group deficiencies into larger categories.
Encinitas Nursing and Rehabilitation Center has had deficiencies and citations in the following areas:
According to these laws and regulations, California nursing homes must:
If the elder you love has suffered injuries due to nursing home negligence in a Solana Beach area facility, you have two years to bring a lawsuit against the caregiver and/or facility that harmed your loved one. The same two-year time limit applies if nursing home negligence caused fatal injuries. The law does allow for some exceptions, but in most cases, if you do not take action within the statute of limitations, you will miss out on the opportunity to recover damages because a court will no longer hear the case.
Some nursing home residents cannot communicate their illness or injuries to nurses, nursing assistants, family members, or others who might help. Even those who can communicate sometimes do not complain, especially when abuse and neglect are involved, because they fear retaliation or do not want to burden their family. Sometimes California courts make an exception to the statute of limitations in these cases under the delayed discovery rule. A caregiver, nurse, doctor, or family member must notice injuries or signs of abuse or neglect and report them. Delayed discovery means the two-year statute of limitations clock starts when someone discovers and reports the injury, even if it is weeks or months after the injury occurred.
If the nursing home resident you love cannot or will not tell you about abuse or neglect, you need to keep an eye out for common signs and symptoms. If you notice something odd that does not automatically mean your loved one has been abused or neglected, but it should give you pause and motivate you to dig deeper.
Some physical and behavioral signs of abuse and neglect include:
Financial abuse can traumatize residents and can financially devastate victims and their families, depending on the situation.
If you are in charge of your loved one’s finances, the following things may indicate financial abuse:
If you suspect your loved one has been a victim of physical or financial abuse or neglect, call the local police to file a police report and immediately contact a nursing home negligence attorney. If nursing home negligence has led to physical and emotional injuries, your priority must be to stop the behavior. This protects your loved one and other residents from continuing harm.
The following California agencies accept complaints about nursing home abuse and neglect:
The APS and Long-Term Care Ombudsman cross-report with other state agencies, so you do not have to file a complaint with both. Once you file a complaint, the state will initiate an investigation. If the investigating agency finds your complaint credible, they usually share the report with the local police to file criminal charges.
Filing a complaint is essential to stopping abuse and neglect and holding the nursing home and its employees accountable for negligence, but complaints serve as only one pathway to seek justice for your loved one. For help with filing your complaint and for following up with legal action, give us a call today.
Seeking compensation for damages is another pathway to justice for the nursing home resident you love. Your loved one can bring a lawsuit against the negligent nursing home with the help of an attorney, but sometimes a nursing home resident cannot communicate, so they cannot file the lawsuit on their own.
If your loved one is non-communicative or has died from injuries related to nursing home negligence, the following people can file a lawsuit against the facility on your loved one’s behalf:
If the nursing home resident you love, or someone on their behalf, files a nursing home negligence lawsuit, they may receive compensation for a wide range of damages and losses related to their injuries.
If both sides settle during negotiations or if the court rules in favor of your loved one, damages could include compensation for:
If nursing home negligence led to the death of an elder you love, those who file a wrongful death lawsuit and/or survival action may receive some above damages, burial and funeral expenses, and compensation for the loss of your loved one. Your Solana Beach nursing home negligence attorney can answer further questions you have about nursing home negligence and wrongful death cases.
If your loved one suffered neglect in a nursing home, the nursing home may quickly offer a settlement to help compensate their wrong, including medical or moving expenses. Consult a personal injury attorney before accepting any offer made by the nursing home.
Many nursing homes carry insurance designed to help protect them. Others may have legal teams who want to minimize the financial impact on the nursing home following a case of neglect. Unfortunately, while a quick settlement may be attractive when families are facing increased medical expenses, they typically do not reflect the full value of an injured senior’s claim.
An attorney can help provide injured parties and their loved ones with an accurate estimate of the amount of compensation they are entitled to. An attorney may also identify other parties that contributed to the neglect or that bear liability in the claim, which can ultimately help maximize the compensation an injured party may receive.
Injured in an accident? Get a real trial lawyer. Get Gomez.
If you have a loved one who suffered abuse or negligence in a Solana Beach nursing home, contact our Solana Beach nursing home lawyers to see if we can help you. Contact Gomez Trial Attorneys or call us at (619) 237-3490 today for a free consultation.
Gomez Trial Attorneys
603 N. Highway 101
Solana Beach, CA 92075
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