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Surprise Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Moving yourself or a loved one to a nursing home can be a big decision. However, people often require more assistance and medical care as they age, and in some cases, nursing homes can be the only option to ensure that necessary care is received. This is also why nursing homes in Arizona are growing by leaps and bounds. More than 1.5 million seniors are living in Arizona today, and this population is expected to grow in future years. Many of these older Arizonians, who often reside in Surprise, Sun City, Carefree, and Paradise Valley, may eventually require nursing home care in one of the many senior facilities in Maricopa County.
Unfortunately, not every nursing home offers the care you or your loved one deserves. They also may mistreat or abuse patients by not feeding or bathing them, not changing their bedding, and sometimes, even physical and sexual abuse occur.
If you or a loved one has suffered nursing home abuse in Surprise or elsewhere in Maricopa County you should contact Gerber Injury Law’s personal injury lawyers to handle your nursing home abuse case. We fiercely believe in safeguarding the rights and safety of older Arizonians who have entrusted their care and well-being to local nursing home facilities. Our nursing home abuse lawyer will work tirelessly to obtain financial compensation for the abuse that was endured.
What Is Nursing Home Abuse?
While we expect nursing homes to treat our loved ones with care and compassion, this does not always happen. Abuse in a nursing home context often involves:
Sexual assault or rape
Deprivation of food and water
While most nursing home abuse is caused by staff, this is not always true. Fellow nursing home residents can also abuse other residents. Additionally, there can be neglect by nursing staff that is tantamount to abuse, including:
Not offering enough nutrition to meet the resident’s physical needs
Not assisting with personal hygiene
Not offering adequate shelter and food
Not protecting the resident from health and safety risks
Not offering sufficient medical care for mental and physical needs
Nursing Home Abuse Statistics
Nursing home abuse is more common than many of us think. Abuse and neglect are possible if your loved one lives in a nursing home, long-term care facility, senior community, or rehabilitation center. Consider these sobering statistics:
About 10% of seniors in the U.S. are abused in some form, but the actual number could be higher
Older women are more likely to be abused than men
Nursing home abuse is often unreported, with only about one out of 24 cases reported
Nursing home caregivers are more likely to abuse seniors than family members or spouses
About one-third of seniors with dementia in a recent study suffered some type of mental abuse from caregivers, according to the Journal of American Geriatrics Society
Almost 40% of seniors in a 2014 study by Northwestern stated they had been verbally abused at least once
According to the Journal of The American Medical Association, seniors who are physically abused have a 300% higher risk of dying early than those who are not abused
More than 9,700 nursing home abuse complaints were filed in the U.S. in 2013
Nursing home residents with limited family and social support are at the highest risk of abuse
From 2013 to 2016, at least 1,000 nursing homes in the US were cited for sexual abuse, per a CNN report
The Department of Justice states that caregiver neglect is the most underreported crime in nursing homes, with only one out of 57 cases reported
A study in 2011 found that 20% of nursing home residents were neglected over the previous year
There were approximately 16,000 sexual abuse reports in nursing homes made since 2000, according to the Administration for Community Living
Nursing home abusers may be medical staff, supervisors, janitors, social workers, other residents, and sometimes family members
Hiring a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer in Surprise
If you suspect someone you love is being abused in a nursing home or long-term care facility, you must take legal action immediately. Nursing home abuse is especially personal and upsetting to us, and we strive to obtain the most compensation for our clients. Therefore, when you hire us as your nursing home abuse lawyer in Surprise, we make the following promises:
We treat our nursing home abuse clients as our own families. Therefore, our attorneys and staff care deeply about people who have suffered abuse and neglect at the hands of those who are supposed to care for them.
Our founding attorney, Ken Gerber, employs aggressive legal strategies against nursing homes and their insurance companies. In addition, he and his associate attorneys will use their proven personal injury litigation tactics to obtain financial justice for your loved one.
Our Surprise Gerber Injury Law attorneys will investigate your nursing home abuse claim thoroughly, and if there is a case, we will negotiate aggressively for a settlement. But we can take the nursing home abuse case to trial if warranted. When the nursing home only offers you a pittance in damages, we will aggressively advocate for your rights in court.
You pay nothing during an initial consultation, so there is no risk in having your nursing home abuse case reviewed by our qualified attorneys.
Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home abuse can take many forms, including physical, mental, verbal, and even sexual abuse. Other seniors are simply neglected and forced to lie in their beds uncared for, hungry, thirsty, and sick.
While you should be able to trust the nursing home staff to care for your loved one, it is essential to check on them often, and at times the staff does not expect. Pop in for visits with your relative at random times so the staff cannot cover up signs of neglect and abuse, including:
Loss of mobility. The best Surprise nursing homes have robust programs to keep seniors physically active and mobile. Neglectful and abusive facilities may leave residents sitting in wheelchairs and beds for hours or even days, reducing their mobility. Watch for signs that your loved one is getting more immobile.
Poor hygiene. Many older Americans need assistance with basic hygiene, such as brushing their hair and teeth and showering. Negligent nursing homes with inadequate or abusive staff may let residents sit in their own filth for days. If your loved one appears unkempt and dirty, ask questions to the supervisor immediately.
Malnutrition. Many nursing home residents in abusive situations appear malnourished and dehydrated from lack of food and water. Talk to the staff immediately if your loved one is weak or thin.
Mysterious injuries. Accidents happen, but abusive or inadequate staff may lead to unexplained cuts, bruises, and even broken bones.
Unsanitary living conditions. A major sign of abuse and neglect is if your loved one is dirty and their bed and room are unclean.
Mental issues. Being neglected or abused often leads to mental and emotional issues, including fear of staff, resentment, anger, and emotional withdrawal. Other guests may seem anxious or depressed, and you should inquire if you notice sudden psychological changes in your relative.
What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse in Surprise
If you think your relative is a victim of nursing home abuse, you don’t have to tolerate it. However, you should first call 911 if you suspect abuse and a law enforcement investigation should begin immediately. Also, report the matter to the nursing home director.
Next, collect any evidence of the alleged abuse, including photographs of your loved one and their living conditions. For example, get detailed pictures if you see bites, bedsores, dirty bedding, or bite marks. Also, note any conversations you had with staff about the situation.
Further, report the matter to the Arizona state government. Another option is to inform the Arizona Ombudsman about the situation. Next, have your nursing home abuse case reviewed by Gerber Injury Law. Our attorneys can determine quickly if you have a potential claim or lawsuit.
Having an attorney fighting for compensation for you can be a vital part of the recovery process. When you hire a Surprise personal injury attorney, our legal staff will take care of everything while you and your loved one focus on healing. As a result, your attorney is motivated to obtain the most compensation for your losses.
How To Avoid Nursing Home Abuse
If you place your loved one in a Surprise nursing home, the last thing you would expect is abuse and neglect. But sadly, these things happen more often than we want to think. The good news is there are proactive steps you can take to keep your loved one healthy, happy, and safe:
Make regular phone and video calls to your loved one to see how they are doing. Listen and watch carefully to understand how they feel and sound during each conversation
Visit your loved one regularly but at random times. If the nursing home staff knows you come every Sunday at 10 a.m., they can prepare for your visit. Showing up randomly increases the chances you will catch anything unusual.
Research any nursing home you are considering and watch for negative online reviews
Call a Surprise Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one was hurt in a nursing home abuse incident, it is almost impossible to recover adequate compensation without an attorney. Our attorneys understand the pain and suffering a nursing home abuse situation can cause, and we want to help. Our attorneys have obtained millions in compensation for our satisfied personal injury clients over the years.
Please call our Surprise nursing home abuse lawyers at 623-486-8300. Or, complete our Gerber Injury Law contact form and one of our experienced attorneys will contact you immediately. Our founding personal injury attorney, Ken Gerber, has handled many nursing home abuse cases over the years and will fight for the money you deserve.
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If you or a loved one has been injured, don’t hesitate – contact our attorneys today!