Intentional abuse causes serious harm to thousands of nursing home residents in California each year. Sadly, many victims suffer lifelong consequences from the mistreatment of facility staff members and administrators. However, thousands more sustain equally severe harm because of inadvertent recklessness or carelessness by the people entrusted with their care.
Neglect in California nursing homes should never be tolerated. This could serve as grounds for civil litigation if it directly results in a resident suffering avoidable physical harm. Fortunately, help is available from a seasoned lawyer with years of experience helping neglected residents seek the restitution they deserve.
What Does Nursing Home Neglect Look Like?
Neglect encompasses any situation where a nursing home resident does not receive the level of care they are entitled to under state and federal law. More specifically, neglect may entail a nursing home failing to provide for a resident’s basic physical needs, not ensuring personal hygiene, failing to provide appropriate medical care, or causing them avoidable social or emotional harm.
Failure to Uphold Rights of Nursing Home Residents
On a basic level, every resident of every nursing home or similar facility in California has a right to adequate nutrition, clean water, and a comfortable temperature inside the facility. Assisted living facilities must ensure a resident has hygienic living conditions by regularly cleaning common areas and private spaces, ensuring residents have clean clothes, bathing residents as needed, and checking in on them regularly.
Medical Negligence in Nursing Homes
In a medical context, neglect may manifest as:
- Failure to provide regular checkups for residents
- Failure to properly care for preexisting conditions like dementia
- Not responding adequately to newfound health issues
- Not administering medications as directed by a resident’s physician
- Failing to move residents with mobility issues regularly, so they do not develop bedsores
Social and Emotional Neglect of Elders
Social and emotional neglect may take many forms. For instance, a failure to ensure that residents with mobility issues have assistive devices to move around the nursing home could constitute neglect. Nursing home staff must also ensure that residents with severe cognitive problems can participate in social events and prevent residents from being isolated.
Establishing Liability for Neglect in a Nursing Home
Neglect can sometimes result from a single staff member’s inattentiveness or overall lack of dedication to their job. However, neglect in California nursing homes is generally more systemic in nature. For example, neglect often stems from understaffing by nursing home administrators, leaving even the most dedicated staff members unable to provide appropriate care for all the residents in their care.
Nursing homes that do not maintain robust and thorough hiring processes are more likely to bring in unqualified employees who do not know how to properly care for vulnerable facility residents. Neglect can also stem from a failure to train new hires properly. These situations could potentially justify civil litigation with help from an attorney if neglect directly causes physical injury or illness to a resident.
Discuss Nursing Home Neglect with a California Attorney
Nursing home residents are vulnerable and susceptible to serious harm if they are neglected in any way. If you suspect a loved one has experienced any type of neglect in their nursing home, prompt legal action is critical to protecting their wellbeing.
A knowledgeable attorney at our firm can be a crucial ally in combatting neglect in a California nursing home. Learn more about your legal options for protecting your loved one by calling today.