Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers in Alabama | Farris, Riley & Pitt
Did you know that Nursing home abuse in Alabama includes:
- Insufficient medical care
- Preventable accidents
- Poor sanitation
In Alabama, poor nursing home care is often the result of too few employees and a lack of training. Elderly women are more likely than elderly men to become victims of neglect or abuse.
Background: Nationwide Nursing Home Crisis
Across the United States, millions of people wake up every day in nursing homes everyday. In Alabama, many of these individuals are helpless, vulnerable and completely dependent upon the Alabama nursing home staff to meet most or all of their needs. Nursing homes in Alabama and around Birmingham are responsible for providing care to elderly and disabled residents. Unfortunately, the quality of care in the nursing home industry has increasingly declined over the past decade. A number of recent studies indicate that residents in nursing homes suffer abuse and neglect more and more frequently at the hands of nursing home corporations. In many cases residents have died or have been severely abused from neglect in a nursing home.
Abuse and Neglect in Nursing Homes from Staff and Residents
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), elder abuse is a growing problem. Concerned people can spot the warning signs of a possible abuse problem and make a call for help. Following are the main kinds of elder abuse to watch for. Not all elder abuse is physical abuse, some is psychological or financial/fraud.
Physical abuse in a nursing home is someone uses excessive force that results in:
- Physical pain,
- Bodily injury,
Signs and symptoms of physical abuse in an Alabama nursing home include:
- Physical punishment
- Bruises lacerations, and rope marks;
- Broken bones fractures;
- Cuts, punctures, open wounds;
- Bleeding/internal injuries;
- Physical signs of being restraint;
- Over medicating; and
- Under medicating.
Sexual abuse in a nursing home is considered to be any sexual activity with any non-consensual elderly person or with any person incapable of giving consent.
Signs and symptoms of sexual abuse in a nursing home in Alabama:
- Bruises around the breasts or genital area;
- Sexually transmitted diseases;
- Unexplained vaginal or anal bleeding;
- Torn, stained, or bloody underclothing; and
- Reports of sexual assault or rape.
Emotional or psychological abuse in a nursing home is pain, distress, or anguish through verbal or nonverbal acts such as insults, harassment, intimidation, threats, and humiliation. Other types of emotional abuse are the “silent treatment,” social isolation, and treating an older person like an infant.
Signs and symptoms:
- Emotionally agitated or upset;
- Withdrawn and non communicative behavior;
- Unusual behavior (i.e. sucking, biting, rocking); and
- Reports of verbal or emotional mistreatment.
Nursing Home Neglect – Failing to Care for Residents
Neglect in an Alabama Nursing Home is the refusal to care for or failure to fulfill any obligations or duties to an elder. Neglect does not have to necessarily be physical, but may be financial in terms of paying for essential home care services or the failure on the part of an in-home service provider to provide necessary care.
Neglect in Alabama normally means the refusal to provide an elderly person with basic life necessities as food, water, shelter, clothing, basic hygiene, medicine, and safety.
Signs and symptoms of Nursing Home Neglect in Alabama include:
- Bed sores,
- Personal hygiene,
- Untreated health problem,
- Unsafe living condition/arrangements (e.g., improper wiring, no heat, or no running water), and
- Unsanitary living conditions.
Financial Abuse and Property Theft in Nursing Homes
Financial/Material Abuse in a nursing home in Birmingham is the improper or illegal use of an elder’s assets including funds and property.
Signs and symptoms of Financial Abuse include:
- Drastic changes in bank accounts;
- Additional names included on an elder’s bank card;
- Unauthorized use of an elder’s ATM card;
- Hasty changes in a will or other financial documents;
- Disappearance of money or valuable possessions;
- Poor care or unpaid bills despite adequate financial resources available;
- Forged signatures;
- Uninvolved relatives claiming their rights to an money and possessions;
- Sudden transfer of assets;