As the Baby Boom generation joins the ranks of the nation’s senior citizens, more and more American families are facing the difficult decision of how to provide high quality long-term care for their elderly loved ones. Modern medicine’s ability to extend our life expectancy has resulted in large numbers of people who survive long past their ability to care for themselves. This often necessitates turning to institutional care in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Our elderly and infirm have the right to receive a high level of care, both physical and emotional, without sacrificing their dignity as they age.
While adult children of elders in need of care search for facilities that can meet their aging parents’ needs in a pleasant, healthy, and respectful environment, this is an ideal that is, sadly, difficult to attain. Florida, as one of the nation’s premier retirement states, has a disproportionate number of elderly residents, which translates into more people who require nursing home/assisted living care, and thus more potential for inadequate or abusive care solutions.
Abuse and neglect of the elderly in nursing home and long-term care settings is so common that it has almost come to be not the exception but the rule, as these shocking statistics reveal:
Being old and vulnerable and having to depend on others for basic care is difficult in the best of circumstances; but having to deal with abuse causes additional harmful effects on the victim’s mental and physical health. The NCEA reports that elderly victims of abuse are three times more likely to die, to experience severe psychological disturbance, to suffer more joint and bone problems, digestive disturbances, high blood pressure, heart problems, and a diminished sense of self-efficacy. Our elderly citizens deserve better!
If you and your family have made the difficult decision to place a loved one in a nursing or assisted care home, you absolutely must monitor the quality of care vigilantly. Visit frequently, giving no advance warning of your arrival. If anything appears to be out of order, ask questions and demand answers (politely of course). Make certain that the home is clean, fresh-smelling, and secure. Observe the caregivers. Are they friendly and relaxed, or do they appear to be overworked or stressed?
If you notice any of these in the patient, consider it a red flag:
If you observe any of these signs, or if the patient has been transported to different hospital emergency rooms on various occasions, there may be a problem. Unless cognitive losses make communication difficult, ask the patient about their treatment by staff and other patients in the home. If abuse or neglect appears to be a real possibility, you will need to report it to Senior Protective Services, find a new home for your family member, report the situation to the federal Agency for Health Care administration, and engage the services of a Florida nursing home abuse attorney.
Your attorney may be able to help you recover monetary damages, which should make it easier for you to relocate the patient to a better quality care home.
These are sensitive cases, requiring a lawyer with compassion and commitment to improving the lot of our elderly citizens. By making a legal claim against the abusive or neglectful home, you are forcing the owners and staff to face up to their responsibility for the harm done and showing them that inadequate care will not be tolerated.
If you are facing the painful discovery that someone you love is being mistreated in a nursing home or assisted living home, or if you are the victim yourself, you will find the compassionate concern and knowledgeable legal guidance you need by calling the law offices of attorney Stephen Maltezos. Steve has offices located in Tampa and St. Petersburg for your convenience, and he can travel to the nursing home where the wrongdoing is occurring. Steve is widely known for his family values, prodigious work ethic, and heart-felt commitment to justice. He understands the suffering that elder abuse can cause, and he is tireless in his pursuit of a financial resolution that will help improve the life of every abuse victim and family that turns to him for help.
Don’t allow another day of abuse to go by without getting the help you need. Call Maltezos Law today and schedule a free consultation to learn about your legal options. Don’t worry about the cost. Steve will take your legitimate nursing home abuse case on contingency, so you’ll have no out-of-pocket costs, and will pay nothing until the day you receive your compensation award. If you .don’t recover money, you will owe absolutely nothing, so call today.