Reporting Nursing Home Abuse in Maryland
Nursing home residents should all receive quality care that meets state and local standards. When a nursing home fails to uphold those standards resulting in harm to a resident, they must be held accountable.
If you believe that your loved one has suffered abuse or neglect at a nursing home in Maryland, contact Schlachman, Belsky, Weiner & Davey, P.A. for a free, confidential consultation. It is important to act quickly in order to protect your loved one from further injury. Call (410) 685-2022 to speak with a highly qualified nursing home abuse lawyer today.
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Often Goes Unreported
All nursing home residents have a right to freedom from abuse, mistreatment, and neglect. Unfortunately, a large number of nursing home abuse and neglect cases go unreported each year. Even more egregious, a large number of reported nursing home abuse cases are not investigated.
An audit by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General found that thousands of serious nursing facility abuse and neglect cases were not investigated or reported. In order to protect your loved one, it is essential to be proactive. Reporting suspected abuse is the only way to stop these acts and ensure that vulnerable seniors are treated with dignity and respect.
“Red Flags” at Nursing Home Facilities
Nursing home residents should be given adequate accommodations to meet their medical, physical, psychological, and social needs. Abuse and neglect at a nursing home can encompass a wide range of harm, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, financial abuse, and neglect.
Red flags that should raise concern at a nursing home facility:
- The facility is dirty or seems unsanitary;
- Signs of malnutrition or dehydration;
- Unhappy or despondent residents;
- High staff turnover;
- Signs of bruising, bedsores, or other markings;
- Residents seem fearful of staff or are regularly isolated;
- Lack of supervision; or
- Unclean linens.
These are only a few of the signs that the nursing home facility does not provide an adequate quality of care, resulting in resident abuse or neglect. It is critical to speak up early and often if you have any concerns. Document who you speak to and contact our office to discuss your legal options.
Steps to Take If Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect Has Occurred
In order to protect your loved one from future nursing home abuse or neglect, it is imperative to report any and all suspected negligence or wrongdoing. A nursing home resident who suffers abuse may not want to come forward for fear of retaliation by staff members. Many times it is family members and loved ones that must report the abuse to ensure that it is stopped and wrongdoers are held accountable.
If you suspect nursing home abuse or neglect:
- Contact law enforcement if you believe they are in imminent danger.
- Consult with an experienced Baltimore nursing home abuse lawyer.
- Document any signs of abuse or neglect, including bruises, bedsores, malnutrition, or substandard living conditions.
- Make a formal complaint reporting the abuse or neglect. In addition to notifying the supervisor at the facility, you can report suspected abuse or neglect to the Office of Health Care Quality.
It is strongly recommended that you obtain legal representation for your loved one as early in the process as possible. Acting fast can help to prevent further injury or even death. The National Center on Elder Abuse estimates that seniors who have been abused are at a 300% higher risk of death compared to those who have not been mistreated.
Who Can Be Held Responsible in a Nursing Home Abuse Case?
When nursing home abuse or neglect occurs, there may be one or more parties that can be held liable in a civil lawsuit. Depending on the circumstances, a party may also be held criminally responsible for their actions.
Parties who may be held liable in a nursing home abuse or neglect case:
- The facility or its owner;
- The individual who committed the abuse or neglect; or
- A third-party contractor responsible for the injury or death.
At Schlachman, Belsky, Weiner & Davey, P.A., we not only focus on holding liable parties responsible for their negligence or wrongful acts but also on obtaining compensation to cover alternative care for the affected individual. First and foremost, we are advocates for nursing home abuse victims. We fight to ensure that they receive the quality medical care and accommodations that they deserve.
Stop Elder Abuse Today. Contact Our Office for a Free Consultation.
If you suspect that your loved one has been abused or neglected at a nursing home in Maryland, contact our office to schedule a free consultation. Our attorneys are experienced litigators that have obtained hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements and verdicts on behalf of our clients.
Call (410) 685-2022 or fill out our online contact form to get the compassionate, dedicated legal representation your loved one needs. We proudly serve clients and their families in Baltimore and throughout Maryland.