Malpractice, negligence and abuse in nursing homes and assisted living facilities are serious problems requiring experienced legal counsel. When nursing home negligence, nursing home abuse and poor care in an assisted living facility cause injury to your loved on, you need a law firm with knowledge and experience in nursing home malpractice cases.
In March 2014, the US Inspector General released a study finding that one in three (33%) persons who are admitted to a nursing home for rehabilitation are harmed, most as a result of inadequate care and monitoring. The study found 6% of patients died!
In reviewing patient care in nursing homes, we have found patients who are not properly monitored and attended to, leading to falls. We have found inadequate nursing care resulting in bed sores and medication errors. The nursing home may not have proper staffing, resulting in poor supervision with patients wandering off and getting lost. Sadly, we have also investigated cases of patient assaults and abuse in nursing homes and nursing care facilities.
At De Caro & Kaplen, LLP our lawyers have successfully represented nursing home patients who were neglected or harmed. With over 35 years of experience, we have prosecuted cases of inadequate patient care in nursing homes and long term care facilities throughout the State of New York. Our nursing home negligence lawyers understand that the root cause of patient injuries in nursing homes is the inadequate and improper care that they received.
Bed Sores: Decubitus ulcers, often referred to pressure ulcers or bed sores are caused by poor medical and nursing care. Bed sores/pressure ulcers frequently occur in hospitals and nursing homes as a result of the failure to take proper precautions such as turning a patient every two hours, allowing a patient to remain in their own urine and the failure to eliminate pressure points on a patient’s skin. We have found that although bed sore prevention protocols exist in the nursing facility, the nursing home staff and nursing care facility personnel often fail to follow them. Often the nursing home staff is inadequately trained in insufficient staff is present to provide proper care.
Proper prevention techniques and good nursing care will prevent bed sores from developing. By carefully reviewing a patient’s chart and nursing home staffing patterns we have been able to determine that a patient was not turned at proper intervals causing bed sores to develop that went unrecognized and untreated. Frequently the inadequate care of bed sores causes them to become infected, requiring surgery and months of rehabilitation. We have been able to successfully obtain compensation for pressure sores caused by poor nursing care and nursing home neglect.
Falls due to Nursing Home Neglect: Falls often take place as a result of nursing home negligence. Without proper supervision or assistance, patients may be allowed to get out of bed or walk. Nursing home patients may be forced to leave their beds and go to the bathroom alone because their calls for assistance have been ignored. In some cases, patients fall out of bed because proper bed rails or patient restraints were not in place.
In other instances, patients suffering from dementia have wandered out of the nursing home because they were not properly supervised, or the nursing home lacked sufficient monitoring equipment. We have even been retained in cases where a patient was dropped because of the lack of transfer skills by nursing home staff or because not enough staff was present to insure a safe transfer. In most instances, falls in nursing home are preventable if proper care and precautions were taken.
Incompetent or Inadequate Nursing Home Staff: Our nursing home abuse attorneys have been involved in cases where improper staffing has led to patient injury. In one case, there was only one nurse responsible for more patients than it was possible to handle. Due to the lack of trained nurses, it became impossible to render nursing care to all the patients requiring assistance. In another case of nursing home negligence, responsibility for care was left to unskilled aides and orderlies because the nursing home was attempting to save money.
Nursing Home Abuse: Sadly, elder abuse including physical and sexual abuse has been encountered in some nursing home homes, leading to a nursing home malpractice claim. Untrained personnel as well as those who have not had sufficient background checks have been hired by nursing homes. Clues that should alert the nursing home administration to elder abuse are often ignored.
Poor Nutrition at Nursing Homes: Poor attention to a nursing home patient’s nutritional requirements can lead to injury or even death. Improper hydration of the patient, the failure to provide the patient with a sufficient amount of calories and providing food that a patient cannot tolerate have all been encountered in cases of nursing home negligence. Cases of patient’s choking because their food was not properly prepared or the failure of the nursing home staff to supervise eating have also been encountered by our New York nursing home malpractice attorneys.
Nursing home patients frequently sustain hip fractures because of the poor care they have received.
A hip fracture in a nursing home patient is a life changing or life ending event.
A recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) on the long term outcome of nursing home patients sustained a hip fracture [Survival and Functional Outcome After Hip Fracture Among Nursing Home Residents JAMA Intern Med: 2014; 174(8):1273-1280] reported:
36.2% of patients in nursing homes who sustained a hip fracture died within 6 months and 53.5% of patients became fully dependent within 6 months. The study concluded, “Survival and functional outcomes are poor after hip fracture among nursing home residents, particularly for patients receiving nonoperative management, the oldest old, and patients with multiple comorbidities and advanced cognitive impairment.”
The skilled nursing home abuse attorneys at De Caro & Kaplen, LLP understand the patterns of abuse and malpractice in nursing homes. In prosecuting cases of nursing home abuse and neglect, we make it a practice not only to obtain and carefully review a nursing home patient’s medical records, we also get court orders allowing us to obtain and review the internal records of the nursing home itself including staffing records, internal memos, rules and policies.
All too often the facts surrounding nursing home negligence are hidden from patients and their families. Injuries resulting from negligence are not reported to family members, and patients do not receive the care they deserve. As nursing home negligence attorneys, we believe that all patients are entitled to quality nursing home care and deserve proper compensation when victims of neglect and malpractice. Additionally, we obtain the records and inspection reports from the Health Department to uncover patterns of elder abuse and inadequate nursing home care. We maintain up to date copies of all applicable state nursing home codes and federal nursing home care regulations. These rules and regulations allow us to determine whether a nursing home has complied with state and federal nursing home safety and nursing home care regulations.
For over 35 years, Shana De Caro and Michael Kaplen have handled cases of nursing home malpractice in New York City and throughout New York State including Long Island (Nassau and Suffolk Counties), Westchester, Rockland, and Orange Counties, in the Mid-Hudson region including Ulster and Sullivan Counties and throughout upstate New York including Albany, Buffalo, Rochester and Syracuse areas. Allow us to put our experience, skill and resources to work for you.
If your loved one has sustained bed sores/pressure ulcers, fractures, malnutrition, physical abuse, or sexual abuse or other injury while a patient in a New York nursing home, residential health care facility or long term care facility, contact us at De Caro & Kaplen, LLP to schedule a free, no obligation appointment.
Call us toll free at 1 (866) 272-4652. Our team of experienced nursing home attorneys will assess your case for and explore your legal options. Isn’t it time that you fight back? Shift the scales in your favor with lawyers who have the knowledge and experience in nursing home negligence and abuse cases to properly represent your loved one.