Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers in Daytona Beach
If you suspect a loved one or family member, currently residing in a Florida nursing home, is suffering elder abuse or negligence, seek help immediately. If you believe they are in immediate danger, contact 911 or the care facility’s manager. Otherwise, we highly recommend contacting the Daytona Beach nursing abuse attorneys at Farah & Farah at your earliest convenience. We have fought against negligent care facilities for decades and we have what it takes to hold them accountable. Whether you have been dealing with the fallout of the abuse for a while, or you just discovered signs of a problem, you need a step-by-step plan to ensure justice is done.
Give us a call today at (386) 267-6921.
What Kind of Abuse Exists In Daytona Beach Nursing Homes?
Over the years, our Daytona Beach injury attorneys have encountered a wide variety of injustices committed in nursing homes. Unfortunately, a vast majority of these crimes are committed under cover of darkness and behind closed doors. It is difficult, if not impossible, to catch the individual or group in the act. These are bullies that rely on isolation and fear to sustain the cycle of abusive behavior. Therefore, keeping an eye out for evidence is critical. Consider some of the following abuses and their warning signs:
- Physical abuse – Unfortunately reports of abusive staff members hitting, punching, scratching, or violently restraining residents are an all too common feature on our nightly news. In your own circumstances, you might notice signs of physical abuse before you even realize the source. A small bruise here, a small laceration there. Unless the elder in question complains outright, physical abuse can go undetected for quite some time. If you suspect anything, keep a detailed log and take as many photos as possible.
- Emotional abuse – Like physical abuse, emotional abuse is an all too common occurrence in our nation’s nursing homes – maybe even more so. Stressed staff members, take their anger and frustration out on residents by yelling at them, arbitrarily preventing them from seeing friends and family, and punishing them by not opening windows or keeping them away from other residents. Unlike physical abuse, however, the signs of emotional trauma can be even subtler. Keep a close watch on your loved one’s behavior and everyday responses if you suspect such attacks.
- Neglect – As a direct result of a lack of attention, or self-neglect, seniors can suffer terribly. Medications may not be administered on time or at all, infections or illnesses may be noticed too late, and bedsores can form on patients who are unable to physically turn themselves over.
It’s difficult to think about your loved one getting taken advantage of at an assisted living facility. An older person frequently has difficulty communicating what’s taken place. As a result, in many cases mistreatment and negligence go unidentified. In Florida, specifications are lawfully imposed through the state government with regard to the management of nursing homes, assisted living facilities and other healthcare service providers. These legislation pieces are put together to shield senior citizens from substantial injuries as well as death.
The nursing home abuse attorneys in our Daytona Beach office represent the elderly and make sure that they are compensated for abuse and neglect. Farah & Farah recognizes that getting justice for the elderly is important. Contact our office as soon as possible if your family member or friend has been exploited at a nursing home facility in Florida.
The Best Way to Uncover Elder Neglect, Physical Abuse, or Mental Abuse
The elderly who suffer from physical abuse, mental abuse and neglect usually don’t have a voice. Frequently, family members will worry about reporting the physical or mental abuse on account of not being aware of what’s available as far as resources are concerned for combating against it. A key factor is being able to recognize the indicators of elderly mistreatment and neglect, such as:
- Personal injuries that cannot be described: When your relative seems to have unusual bruises, cuts, or wounds, abusive conditions might be present.
- Bruises: An important point is the specific location of the bruise and how abnormal it looks. If you see bruising of the upper limbs or in areas of the lower body, it is possible that aggressive handling may have occurred. It is true that a seniors tend to bruise easier, but the very fact of living in a nursing home or assisted living facility is designed to offset the chance for bruising and trauma.
- Bedsores & Pressure Sores: In many instances, a family member is bedridden because of old age. Bedsores may develop if an individual is bedridden but not shifted on a regular basis, typically every few hours or between shifts. It is not unusual to notice bedsores in elderly care facilities.
- Unexplained Weight Loss: Be aware of excessive weight loss, can imply that dietary needs are being ignored.
- Cleanliness: The personal hygiene of your relative is an important task supplied by the nursing home facilities. If the loved one’s clothing and residence aren’t tidy, neglect is likely happening.
- Signs of blood or bleeding: Any sign of blood should signal that a family member is likely to be experiencing misltreatment. Take notice of the location of the blood, because loved ones might also be victims of sexual abuse.
- Incidents involving slips or falls: Suitable precautions must be made available to elderly people within an elderly care facility in order to avoid accidents, like handrails and properly maintained ramps.
- Usage of Chemicals for Restraint: Chemicals and medicines may be used in senior living facilities when physical abuse has been documented. For any patients showing overly aggressive behavior, it is not uncommon for senior care centers accused of abuse or neglect use prescription drugs in excess of typical dosages to subdue patients. Excess dosages are unsafe and may drastically affect the health and well-being in the seniors, including the possibility of death.
Florida Laws on Abuse in Nursing Facilities
All staff members of senior care facilities are required to conduct themselves according to standards put in place by the Florida Department of Health (FDH). Priors to working in a nursing home, there’s a specific number of instructional hours is required for every assistant and health provider. Florida law requires that all nursing homes in Florida have at least one nutritionist, a registered nurse and a doctor, who should all be qualified and on the premises. Criminal background checks and immunizations are required for every staff worker. All elderly persons in nursing homes in the state of Florida are entitled to access appropriate health care for any emergency, and they have a right to prescription drugs and psychological therapy. Other requirements include: regular exercise, a healthy & nutritious dietary plan, social functions where patients interact with other nursing home residents, and the satisfaction of a peaceful existence. A loved one should not be victims of any type of abuse. Any employee found in violation of the laws relating to the proper care of the elderly should be reported as soon as information about the abuse is obvious. It is a requirement that any individual living in a senior living facility be offered clean living quarters. This is specified under Florida legislation. Ramps and handrails should provide easy and safe access to a clean, tidy living areas, including kitchens and restrooms. Clean clothes and clean linens should be replaced on a regular basis, coupled with the removal of debris and dirt which accumulates inside their living space. Hot water, heating, and air conditioning must also be available to residents at all times. Clean, drinkable water and pest control throughout nursing home facilities are also required.
Legal Ramifications of Elder Abuse in Nursing Homes
Violators of senior care center abuse laws can be found guilty in civil lawsuits, and felony cases can be pursued in certain circumstances. Employee working in assisted living facilities may be of civil and felony or misdemeanor criminal charges, if instances of maltreatment and neglect go unreported. If there was no violation, but the staff member described an instance of neglect, chances are the matter will be researched; although the worker certainly will not be disciplined. Generally, if the law has been violated, the nursing home itself faces similar charges. If there was abuse or neglect and it has gone uncorrected, the elderly care facility will face significant fines, civil lawsuits, and possibly be temporarily or permanently shut down.
If a family member or friend has experienced abuse or negligence while under the treatment of a senior living facility in Florida, alert the authorities about the circumstance right now. As required by Florida statutes, any situations regarding physical or mental abuse or negligence need to be reported within 24 months; although, it is important that any account of abuse be submitted as soon as possible. Speak to a Daytona Beach nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer at Farah & Farah if you have questions about how to proceed. Contact one of the experienced attorneys on our nursing home abuse legal team to evaluate your claim.
Take Action Now and Contact our Daytona Beach Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys
You are concerned that the nursing home you suspect of abusing your loved one may try to deny your allegations. Let the law firm of Farah & Farah look into your case and help you hold the negligent parties accountable. We will not let the nursing home push you around or try to escape liability. Call (386) 267-6921 today or submit your information online and a representative will contact you shortly.