Montana Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorney
Instances of elder abuse in Montana nursing home are on the rise every year. It is one of the most devastating experiences to discover that a loved one is being abused or neglected in a nursing home. Family members often pay thousands of dollars so that their loved ones can receive care in nursing home facilities, but the reality is that they often do not receive this care. When it is discovered that a loved one has been harmed in a nursing home facility, family members must take action and stand up for the rights of that loved one.
According to the statistics maintained by Medicare, twenty-three (31%) of the 74 nursing homes rated in Montana where identify with serious violations and deficiencies. These Montana nursing homes fallen below the national average because they were found to provide their residents substandard care that lead to harm or wrongful death. Was your loved one abused, mistreated, injured, or died prematurely because of neglect? If so, we encourage you to contact the Montana nursing home abuse lawyers at Nursing Home Law Center today to discuss the merits of your claim for compensation during a free case review.
The statistics for Montana nursing homes indicate that it is more likely than not that your loved one resides in a nursing home with severe deficiencies. Currently, over 50 percent of Montana nursing homes have been cited as having an accident-prone environment. In addition, over 26 percent of nursing home facilities do not provide the adequate urinary or incontinence care that loved ones require. Over 32 percent of all nursing homes in Montana also have been cited with deficiencies due to the number of residents developing bed sores every year. These unfortunate statistics reveal that more pressure must be placed on nursing homes to ensure that loved ones are protected at all times. Family members can begin placing this pressure on nursing homes by getting in touch with Montana nursing home lawyers today.Montana Nursing Home Injury Laws
Family members of abused, neglected or deceased nursing home residents have several options for the legal strategy that they may pursue. A nursing home injury lawyer can help you in the process of filing a negligence claim, medical malpractice claim or a wrongful death claim. In a negligence action, family members have only three years in which to file a lawsuit since the occurrence of the original injury. For medical malpractice claims, the time period may last for up to five years. Wrongful death actions may be filed within three years from the date of the original injury that lead to the loved one’s death. Noneconomic damages for any of these actions is capped at $250,000. Punitive damages are capped at $10 million of three percent of the defendant’s net worth.
In Montana, there are also a couple of statutes that govern cases involving nursing home abuse and neglect. These statutes are the Protective Services Act for Aged Persons or Disabled Adults and the Elder and Persons with Developmental Abuse Prevention Act. Under these acts, a person must file a report when he or she knows or has a reasonable cause to believe that an elderly person is being subjected to abuse, exploitation or neglect. Physicians, nurses, assistants, social workers, chiropractors, dentists and even optometrists all have a legal duty to file a report of abuse when they have reasonable cause to believe that an elderly person is suffering from it.Investigating the Abuse of Your Loved One and Filing a Report
When a report is filed, then a person at the agency that receives the report will then make a written description of the conditions of the abuse. A physician may also assist in gathering evidence after a report of abuse or neglect has been made. This may entail taking photographs of the trauma and injuries that a patient has suffered.
Once the evidence of one’s injuries and medical conditions has been gathered, it is important for family members to know that is has broad admissibility into evidence. Under §52-3-821, the Montana statutes clearly indicate that the report and its evidentiary basis may not be excluded from evidence based on a privilege. This means that a physician may not assert the physician’s privilege to try to keep evidence out of a trial concerning the abuse or neglect of a resident.Call Our Montana Nursing Home Injury Lawyers Today
Call Montana nursing home lawyers today to learn about the legal strategies that you have for filing a claim. Montana nursing home lawyers will do whatever it takes to handle your case in a professional and precise manner. You can get in touch with one of our lawyers to schedule a meeting in the office or a discussion over the phone. Our attorneys are available to help families throughout Montana in areas such as:
- Great Falls
Now is the time to end the elder abuse in Montana nursing home that your loved one has suffered.Montana Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers Serving Victims of Bed Sores, Pressure Sores & Decubitus Ulcers
The state of Montana has enacted laws, procedures and protocols to ensure nursing home owners, administrators and staff provide proper medical care to every patient. In fact, nursing home medical professionals are given the duty to exercise reasonable care to protect every resident from neglect, carelessness, recklessness or abuse. They are duty bound to ensure that no medical staff, family member, visitor or other resident causes the patient harm.
However, even with these imposed laws, many patients are victims of negligence at the hands of the medical staff. In many situations, the patient can develop decubitus ulcers (bedsores; pressure sores; pressure ulcers) as a result of inattentiveness of the medical staff who are too busy, overworked or lack sufficient training. In some incidences, mobility challenged patients are often forced to lie in their own urine, feces and sweat due to inattention.What is a Decubitus Ulcer?
Decubitus ulcers are serious skin wounds that generally occur on a bony prominence on the patient’s body. The most common areas tend to be where the skin contacts a mattress pad, chair cushion or pillow. These areas include:
- Head and ears
- Neck, shoulders and shoulder blades
- Spine, tailbone, buttocks and hipbones
- Back of the upper and lower legs
- Ankles, toes and heels
Decubitus ulcers are typically the result of constant pressure being applied to a local area on the body. The pressure restricts oxygenated blood from reaching the skin, causing the tissue to become compromised. When the pressure is not alleviated, it can cause extensive physical damage where a shallow crater develops exposing fat deposits, bone and muscle. If not treated properly, decubitus ulcers can become life threatening when skin infection (sepsis) or bone infection (osteomyelitis) develops.
If the medical staff at the nursing facility provides proper monitoring of the patient’s skin, nearly any decubitus ulcer can be avoided. To prevent the development of a bedsore, the facility’s medical staff must enforce proven medical standard protocols to maximize the health of every patient. These protocols include:
- Readjusting the position of the patient at least once within a two-hour timeframe around-the-clock
- Provide the patient the best nutrition and ensure that they remain hydrated
- Provide bedsore-preventing padding, mattresses, wheelchairs and chairs to reduce pressure to the patient’s skin
- Take every appropriate step to ensure that the individual remains dry and clean at all times
When moisture is allowed to make continuous contact with the skin, the tissue can easily break down, form a bedsore, rupture the skin, and worsen the condition.An Indicator of Negligence that Deserves to Be Evaluated by Attorneys with Pressure Sore Litigation Experience
A developing bedsore on any patient is usually the first indicator of negligence at the nursing facility. In many incidences, nursing home administrators are often more interested in generating profits for their owners than providing quality care to their patients around-the-clock. Outright negligence, lack of monitoring and ongoing inattentiveness are often caused by understaffing, or nurses and nurse’s aides who have not received proper training in treating bedsores.
If you suspect that your loved one has developed a bedsore as the result of negligence by the nursing staff, it is essential to take legal action immediately. A reputable Montana decubitus ulcer lawyer has access to medical teams of specialists dedicated to treating serious life-threatening decubitus ulcers. The team can be sent to the nursing facility to provide treatment immediately. These professionals provide the lifesaving services in cities all throughout Montana including:
- Great Falls
- Butte-Silver Bow
Fill the contact form here to schedule an appointment with one of the skilled Montana decubitus ulcer attorneys on the list below. The lawyers offer an initial free consultation to discuss your legal options for stopping the negligent actions of the nursing facility today. With your attorney’s efforts, you can be assured that your loved one receives the dignity and rights to quality healthcare they deserve. It is essential to hold those responsible for your loved ones injuries accountable for their neglect.
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 3 years with Occurrence Rule.
- Medical malpractice – 3 years with Discovery Rule, but no later than 5 years from the date the injury was incurred. In case of minors under four years of age, SOL period begins to run on minor’s eighth birthday.
- Noneconomic damages are limited to$250,000
- Punitive damages – capped at $10 million or 3% of defendant’s net worth.
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 3 years. Mont. Code Ann. §27-2-204 – Tort actions-general and personal injury)
- Noneconomic damages are limited to$250,000. (Mont. Code Ann. §25-9-411)
- Punitive damages – capped at $10 million or 3% of defendant’s net worth. (Mont. Code Ann. §27-1-220)
- Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services
- Adult Protective Services
- Senior and Long Term Care Division
- Senior and Long Term Care Request for Information System
- Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
- Protective Services Act for Aged Persons or Disabled Adults – (Mont. Code Ann. §§52-3-201 – 207)
- Elder and Persons with Developmental Abuse Prevention Act – (Mont. Code Ann. §§52-3-801 – 825)