Hempstead Nursing Home Lawyers
If your loved one has been injured, abused, or neglected in a Hempstead nursing home, New York law gives you the right to seek compensation for damages. Contact one of our experienced nursing home negligence lawyers at Jacoby & Meyers, LLP, through live chat or at (516) 542-0931 today.
As our parents, grandparents, and other family members age, sometimes we need to make the difficult decision to move them into a nursing home to get them the continuous care they need. We expect our loved ones to receive excellent care that includes keeping their dignity intact. Yet, sometimes negligent nursing homes and their staff actively or passively harm some residents.
When residents suffer injury or illness through nursing home negligence, they can suffer physical pain as well as emotional trauma. Additionally, victims and their families face added expenses associated with medical treatment and changing nursing homes as a result of injury or illness from nursing home negligence.
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If your parent, grandparent, or another elder you love has suffered abuse or neglect in a Hempstead nursing home, you need to take action to protect them as soon as possible. Some events occur once, but neglect and abuse often continue indefinitely. Call 911 if the resident you love is in immediate danger. In other situations, file a complaint against the nursing home online with the New York Department of Health. You can also call the Nursing Home Complaint Hotline 24 hours per day at (888) 201-4563.
Negligent nursing homes that allow residents to suffer physical and emotional injury and illness should face the consequences. New York law permits victims of nursing home negligence, or a representative on their behalf, to take legal action by suing for damages in civil court.
If your loved one has suffered illness, injury, or death as a result of nursing home negligence, contact the skilled Hempstead Personal Injury Lawyers of Jacoby & Meyers, LLP for a free case evaluation to discuss the details of your circumstances and determine the best course of action for you and your family.
Jacoby & Meyers, LLP Advocates for Nursing Home Residents
The qualified legal team at Jacoby & Meyers, LLP has been advocating for injured clients for four decades, including those who have fallen victim to nursing home negligence. The firm’s dedication to client service, case preparation, and holding negligent parties accountable for their actions has resulted in millions of dollars in jury awards and settlements for their clients.
Some recent case examples that involve nursing home negligence include:
- $5,000,000 verdict. The nursing home staff left our client alone in his room for hours without checking on him. He went into hypoglycemic shock and suffered permanent brain damage from which he never recovered. Our client lived for six months in a coma until he tragically passed.
- $500,000 settlement. Our diabetic climate fell into a diabetic coma after nursing home staff inadequately monitored her blood sugar. She never recovered and her children contacted us to hold the nursing home responsible for their negligence.
- $270,000 settlement. Our client repeatedly requested dental care because she had a toothache. Her requests were repeatedly denied and she developed an abscess and severe thrush infection. She was hospitalized and treated with intravenous antibiotics.
The above settlements and verdict do not guarantee a specific financial outcome for your Hempstead nursing home negligence claim. Each case has distinguishing facts and circumstances that can add to or detract from its value, making it impossible to predict outcomes. The skilled attorneys at Jacoby & Meyers, LLP have the experience, knowledge, and resources to vigorously pursue the best outcome for your individual circumstances.
Types of Nursing Home Negligence
Many different situations fall under the umbrella of nursing home negligence. Some of the types of nursing home negligence cases we handle at Jacoby & Meyers, LLP include:
Unfortunately, some caregivers intentionally harm residents in nursing homes. New York law defines physical abuse as any intentional use of force that causes bodily injury or pain, such as slapping, hitting, kicking, and bruising. Improper use of physical restraints also falls under the umbrella of physical abuse.
Researchers and practitioners believe that residents severely underreport abuse for fear of retaliation or because they are incapable of communicating due to a specific illness or condition. For example, those who suffer from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease face a greater risk of suffering abuse than their peers.
Nurse aides who are overworked and poorly trained are more likely to neglect nursing home residents than those who work in well-staffed facilities that provide appropriate training. In some situations, caregivers actively neglect residents; in other cases, caregivers have too much on their plates and unintentionally neglect residents. Regardless of the type of neglect, depriving residents of food, water, medication, or other medical care can lead to severe illness and sometimes death. Failure to help residents maintain hygiene, supervise them, and answer call buttons can also lead to illness and injury.
Unintentional falls are a common result of nursing home negligence. Although falls can occur when staff doesn’t properly help residents, they are more often a result of the failure to supervise. For example, a resident needs help to go to the bathroom, but the staff doesn’t answer calls or isn’t available. The resident tries to get out of their wheelchair to sit on the toilet and falls.
Unintentional falls are dangerous for elderly nursing home residents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that about 20 percent of falls lead to a serious injury, such as broken bones or a brain injury. Falls are the number one cause of hip fractures in elders, whose bodies do not heal as fast as they did when they were younger.
Nursing home residents who cannot walk on their own depend on nursing home staff to help them in and out of their wheelchairs and adjust them in bed. Those who don’t have the strength to adjust their position or suffer a condition that prevents them from doing anything on their own remain in the same position unless a caregiver moves them. When nurse aides do not frequently turn those in bed or adjust those in wheelchairs, pressure sores can develop. In the worst cases of bedsores or pressure sores, residents can develop a severe, sometimes fatal infection.
Malnourishment and dehydration can occur for several reasons. Sometimes residents refuse food and water. Even in these cases, nurses and nurse aides have a responsibility to address this issue. This might include getting the family involved as well as a physician or mental health professional to determine the reason the resident is refusing drinks and meals.
Other times residents cannot eat or drink without help, so they are often left hungry and thirsty when aides don’t take the adequate time to assist. Malnutrition and dehydration can lead to other serious conditions, some that may lead to death.
Nursing homes and staff members licensed to administer medication have a legal responsibility to ensure residents get the regular medication they need, as well as any treatment for temporary conditions. Failure to administer medication to residents, giving residents the wrong medication, or giving them the wrong dosage can cause serious injury or death. Depending on the situation, medication errors can go beyond simple nursing home negligence.
If you or your loved one has suffered illness or injury surrounding the administration of prescription or over-the-counter medications in a Hempstead nursing home, you might have a medical malpractice claim. Your nursing home negligence attorney can advise you on the best course of action.
Nursing homes have the responsibility to maintain a clean and safe environment for residents. Poor cleaning practices and not using gloves or other protective gear can spread infections among residents. The most glaring and recent example occurred during the coronavirus outbreak in New York.
Many nursing homes did not implement the proper type or amount of policies to protect residents from contracting COVID-19, putting entire facilities at risk for infection and potentially death. Another common infection in nursing homes is Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), commonly referred to as a staph infection. Elderly residents have weaker immune systems, which make them far more vulnerable to infections and fatality from infectious diseases.
Recognizing Neglect and Abuse in Hempstead Nursing Homes
As mentioned above, neglect and abuse are severely underreported in nursing homes. Your loved one might communicate with you if nursing home staff are harming them in any way, but you should not count on it. If you suspect any type of nursing home negligence, abuse, or neglect, you need to watch for signs and symptoms. Some will be obvious and others will be more subtle.
Some of the most common ways to recognize possibly neglected or abused nursing home residents include:
- Repeated injuries or falls that can indicate a lack of help or supervision;
- Stories about bruises, wounds, and injuries that do not add up;
- Fear or anxiety about discussing care with you, especially in front of nursing assistants or other employees;
- Soiled clothing or hospital gown use outside of the resident’s room;
- Bad breath, strong body odor, matted hair, or other indicators of poor personal hygiene;
- Lethargy or drugged behavior indicating too much medication; and/or
- Extreme unexplained weight loss, ghostly skin, sunken cheeks, dark circles under the eyes, and other signs of malnutrition or dehydration.
If your loved one has been abused or neglected, they can also suffer emotional trauma. Some behavioral signs of abuse and neglect include:
- Excessive worrying;
- Depression or increased depression;
- Fear that seems irrational;
- Confusion and disorientation;
- Overeating or refusing to eat;
- Trouble falling asleep or sleeping far too long;
- Talking about or attempting self-harm; and/or
- Withdrawing from activities and socialization with other residents.
Recovering Damages After Hempstead Nursing Home Negligence
If your loved one has been injured, abused, or neglected in a Hempstead nursing home, New York law gives them the right to seek compensation for damages related to their injuries. If your loved one cannot communicate, a representative on their behalf can bring the suit to hold the negligent nursing home accountable. Nursing home negligence cases are sensitive and can include multiple parties, so your lawyer can advise you on whom to include.
If you reach a settlement or a court rules in favor of your loved one, they can receive compensation for some or all of the following losses:
- Medical treatment costs for emergency room treatment if applicable, hospital stay, doctor’s visits, follow-up visits, surgery, radiology, lab testing, and assistive devices such as wheelchairs, walkers, and canes;
- Estimated future medical treatment costs when negligence leads to a permanent injury or condition requiring indefinite and ongoing care;
- Costs for mental health professionals such as counselors, psychologists, and any other specialists who help residents face the emotional trauma associated with their illness or injury;
- Costs of transferring your loved one to a safer facility that provides better care;
- Physical pain and suffering;
- Emotional pain and suffering; and/or
- Punitive damages in cases that involve gross negligence.
Unfortunately, some nursing home negligence results in the tragic death of a loved one. New York law permits eligible surviving family members to take legal action, often through the estate of the deceased, to recover damages related to the loss of a loved one. Depending on your relationship with the decedent, you might receive compensation for some of the above losses as well as other non-economic damages. Consult with a nursing home negligence attorney after a loved one dies to discuss the viability of a wrongful death case.
Get the Legal Help You Need from our Hempstead Nursing Home Negligence Lawyers
If your parent, grandparent, or other loved one has suffered injury or illness while residing in a Hempstead nursing home, New York law requires you to file a lawsuit within the two-year statute of limitations. Negligent nursing homes have the obligation to provide quality care for their residents and need to be held accountable when they fail.
If you choose to file a suit against a Hempstead nursing home, you are helping your loved one, but you are also helping others who have suffered or might otherwise suffer in the future.
If you know or suspect your loved one has suffered abuse or neglect in a Hempstead nursing home, we offer a free case evaluation to discuss the details of your circumstances. Contact one of the experienced nursing home negligence lawyers at Jacoby & Meyers, LLP, through live chat or at (516) 542-0931.
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