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Solana Beach Nursing Home Negligence Attorney

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.

Understanding and Defining Solana Beach Nursing Home Negligence

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.

Physical Neglect

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:

  • Failure to provide adequate food and water. Signs of malnutrition and dehydration may emerge quickly in residents who fail to receive a sufficient amount of food or water. Some seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia may refuse to take advantage of available resources or may not eat. However, caregivers should exercise every effort to provide them with nutritious food that is suitable for their dietary needs.
  • Failure to assist with bathing and hygiene. As seniors lose physical capability, they may need assistance to use the toilet, bathe, or perform basic self-care. For example, residents may need help shaving or combing their hair. Loved ones should be aware of signs of physical neglect, such as body odor or soiled clothing, especially when a clean change of clothes is available.

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.

Medical Neglect

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:

  • Ignoring symptoms of illness. When a resident’s health shows signs of deterioration, the nursing home staff is responsible for providing a medical examination and the recommended treatment. If the nursing home facility does not have medical professionals onsite, staff should promptly make an appointment with a resident’s care provider.
  • Failing to report and treat injuries. Seniors, especially seniors in nursing homes, are at a high risk for suffering an injury in a slip and fall accident. After a resident sustains an accident injury, nursing home staff should report the incident and provide medical care for the injury. The staff’s failure to report the injury or provide proper medical care constitutes medical neglect.
  • Failing to provide needed medications on time. When medications are used to treat common medical conditions and they are not administered as prescribed, typically, patients begin to show signs of conditions again. Withholding medication can also lead to increased weakness or leave seniors struggling to combat minor infections or illnesses.

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.

Emotional Neglect

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:

  • Ignore seniors when speaking with them. Instead of engaging in conversation or answering a request for assistance, caregivers may completely ignore residents’ requests.
  • Isolate seniors from other residents. Seniors with impaired mobility may need assistance moving about the nursing home to socialize or participate in group activities. When staff fails to assist with mobility, they may contribute to the emotional neglect of residents.

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.

What Happens When Your Loved One Suffers Negligence in a Solana Beach Nursing Home?

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:

  • Investigate signs of neglect. An attorney may be permitted access to security camera footage of the nursing home, caregivers’ reports, or other internal information directly from the facility. An attorney may also perform research of past complaints of neglect or abuse against the facility or specific caregivers. A thorough investigation of nursing home operations may help strengthen a family’s claims of neglect.
  • Help families understand their loved one’s rights following nursing home neglect. When appropriate, an experienced attorney may help families evaluate the extent of neglect and the value of their loved one’s claim. In addition, they may identify the appropriate remedies for compensating losses and addressing instances of neglect within the facility.
  • Negotiate with a nursing home or insurance company on a loved one’s behalf. After families discover that their loved ones suffered from neglect, they may want to refrain from speaking with representatives of the nursing home or its insurance provider. Although representatives will certainly attempt to contact family members, they must use caution to ensure they do not inadvertently limit the amount of compensation their loved one may receive. An experienced attorney can handle all negotiation discussions on the family’s behalf, allowing them to focus on their loved one’s safety and recovery.

Securing Compensation After Nursing Home Neglect

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:

  • How much did a loved one’s medical expenses cost as a result of the neglect? Neglect in a nursing home can cause substantial medical costs for many seniors. A senior suffering from dehydration or malnutrition may need emergency medical care. On the other hand, a resident who suffers from medical neglect may need substantial medical assistance to readjust doses of medications. Medical expenses can become extensive for seniors requiring long-term treatment and care. Hospitalizations or treatment in a rehabilitation facility can lead to significantly higher costs.
  • Did the resident need to move as a result of the neglect? Sometimes, neglect may run so rampantly through a nursing home that the senior who suffered that neglect can no longer live there. Other times, the senior may need to move to a higher-care facility, especially if neglect led to a substantial decrease in overall health and wellness. If nursing home neglect required a resident’s placement in another facility, they may be entitled to compensation for costs associated with relocating. Costs of relocation may include compensation for increased resident rates at a new facility.
  • How much did the resident suffer as a result of the neglect? Moderate neglect might have resulted in feelings of loneliness or abandonment. Severe neglect, on the other hand, may have had a significant physical and emotional impact on a loved one. Consult an experienced nursing home abuse attorney to learn more about how pain and suffering can contribute to the compensation an injured loved one is entitled to.

Who Bears Liability for Nursing Home Neglect?

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.

For example:

  • Did the nursing home source caregivers from an outside provider? Oftentimes, nursing homes hire third-party companies to provide services and care for residents. Should one of the caregivers from an outside company engage in neglectful or abusive behavior, the company that employees them may bear responsibility for any resulting damages.
  • Did a doctor observe and ignore signs of neglect in the resident? A doctor must report any signs of nursing home abuse or neglect to the state, which should lead to immediate action. If a neglected resident was examined by a doctor during the period of neglect or if they ignored obvious signs of neglect, they may be liable for the resident’s injuries. If there is evidence that a doctor was deliberately negligent in providing residents care, they may be liable for medical malpractice. Claims of medical malpractice may include misdiagnoses or instances in which a doctor failed to provide adequate treatment for a medical condition, illness, or injury.

Settlement Offers Presented by the Nursing Home

Attorney John Gomez

Solana Beach Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer, John Gomez

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 an 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.

Did Your Loved One Suffer Negligence in a Solana Beach Nursing Home?

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
Phone: (868)-252-1500

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