As medical advances and an emphasis on healthier lifestyles continue to extend American lifespans well beyond those of decades past, the need for high-quality nursing home care is experiencing exponential growth.
While most seniors in residential facilities receive the kind of attentive, compassionate care they deserve, an unacceptable number suffer abuse and/or neglect that produces serious injuries or worse. These are the times when a Mount Pleasant nursing home abuse lawyer can play a critical role. An experienced injury attorney in Mount Pleasant can build a case to help produce a successful recovery on your behalf.
Nursing Home Care in South Carolina
According to the National Study of Long-Term Care Providers, more than 1.8 million licensed nursing care beds exist at present in the United States, a number that shows no sign of imminent decline.
Figures from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation reveal that in South Carolina alone, nearly 17,000 individuals reside in certified nursing facilities, a sizable, yet potentially vulnerable population deserving of strong oversight, vigilance, and a societal commitment to safeguarding their well-being.
Indicators of Abuse and Neglect
The National Council on Aging has suggested that while at least one in 10 elderly Americans has suffered from one type of abuse or another, only one of 14 victims will report the fact to proper authorities.
In order to ensure that justice is sought on behalf of those negatively impacted by abuse and neglect in nursing facilities, it is vital that friends, relatives, and others remain attuned to typical categories of harm, which could include:
- Lack of assistance with residents’ personal hygiene needs
- Physical abuse
- Verbal abuse
- Lack of attention to residents’ medical needs
- Psychological mistreatment
- Financial exploitation/theft
- Sexual harassment/assault
No matter the cause of abuse, an individual should contact a nursing home abuse attorney in Mt Pleasant to begin building a strong claim.
Identifying Actionable Abuse Scenarios
Knowing when to pursue further investigation of possible abuse and when to initiate formal legal action in such settings can be a challenge. This is especially true because it can be difficult to distinguish the telltale signs of neglect and mistreatment from standard manifestations of a patient’s advancing age and mental decline. Such distinguishments can be made with the assistance of a Mount Pleasant nursing home abuse lawyer.
However, there are several signals for which family members and advocates must remain on guard, such as:
- Development of bedsores
- Notable drop in hygiene standards
- Bruising on the body
- Unanticipated/unintentional weight loss
- Increased level of patient agitation or anxiety
- Unusual financial difficulties
- Loss of interest in hobbies
- Withdrawal from personal relationships
Drivers of Substandard Nursing Home Care
Sadly, there is no shortage of underlying factors which can and often do lead to abuse and neglect of nursing home residents. Many of these have the potential to expose facility owners, operators, and staff to very serious legal liability.
Failure to provide adequate staffing levels, shoddy employee screening processes, and an absence of quality control measures can all combine to produce tragic outcomes for patients. When this happens, victims and those who love them have every right to hold responsible parties accountable and receive full and fair financial compensation. Such compensation can be pursued by a Mount Pleasant nursing home abuse attorney.
Seeking Legal Advice
Though the emergence of one or even several of the above factors may not be conclusive proof of a problem within a nursing facility, it should be taken as a sign that further inquiry and follow-up may be warranted.
If troubling facts are discovered, a nursing home abuse attorney in Mt Pleasant can launch an investigation to identify violations of patient rights and offer valuable insights on options for pursuing avenues of legal recourse.
Contact a Lawyer
The elderly in the Palmetto State deserve to enjoy their golden years in a safe, nurturing environment that is free from the threat of mistreatment or neglect. Unfortunately, there are instances in which caregivers breach their duty to the aging loved ones whose well-being has been placed in their hands.
If you or a family member have experienced this type of betrayal, a Mount Pleasant nursing home abuse lawyer is ready to aggressively advocate for what is right.