Out of all of the states, New Jersey is known for having some of the highest deficiency rates in its nursing homes. Across the board, research statistics indicate that New Jersey nursing homes are some of the poorest in the nation for their unsafe atmospheres, unsanitary food, poor quality of care, lack of professional standards and incomplete care plans. In the areas of professional standards and accident environments, over 40 percent of New Jersey nursing homes were cited as deficient in 2008.
As for food sanitation and comprehensive care plans, over 20 percent of nursing homes were cited as deficient. It is clear that a statewide problem exists in regards to the lack of quality care being provided by New Jersey nursing homes. If your loved one has suffered from neglect, abuse or exploitation in a nursing home that fails to meet legal guidelines, then you should speak with a New Jersey nursing home lawyer today. New Jersey nursing home lawyers are here to ease your concerns and thoroughly investigate your serious claim.
Federal and State Nursing Home Laws
There are several departments and statutes in place to regulate nursing homes in New Jersey. Despite these stringent laws and oversight authorities, New Jersey nursing homes fail to meet legal standards every year. The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, Adult Protective Services, Department of Health and Senior Services, Division of Aging and Community Services and Long Term Care Ombudsman are responsible for handling allegations of abuse and neglect. The state laws that are in place to provide additional safeguards against abuse or neglect are the Adult Protective Services Act, Suspicion of Abuse or Exploitation of Resident of Residential Health Care Facility Act, Abandonment, Neglect of Elderly Person/Disabled Adult Act and the Nursing Home Residents’ Bill of Rights.
The New Jersey Nursing Home Residents’ Bill of Rights has been modeled after the federal Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987. In this Bill, residents have the right to be offered choices in their medical care and to make decisions in regards to medical care. They also have the right to have privacy during care and treatment as well as have confidentiality in regards to personal and medical information. Under the right to access, residents have the right to have access to quality care and to retain ownership of their personal belongings.
All too often, the staff workers in nursing homes violate these rights. They may steal possessions or actually act in a physically abusive manner toward residents. They may leave confidential patient records out in the open for the world to see. They may isolate patients and forbid them from seeing family members. When one of these rights is violated, a resident does have recourse under the law. Family members should get in touch with the New Jersey Office of the Ombudsman when they believe that a loved one’s rights have been violated. A loved one’s case file will remain closed to the public, and all calls that are made to the ombudsman will remain anonymous.
Know the Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
There are various signs of nursing home abuse that family members should be aware of when visiting their loved ones. Physical signs of abuse are the easiest to recognize, and they should be an instant warning sign of ongoing abuse in the nursing home. Physical signs of abuse include the following:
- External and internal bleeding
- Open wounds
- Severe scratches, cuts and bruising
- Fractured bones and broken limbs
- Broken bones from falls
- Depression and other mental illnesses
- Dirty hair, clothing and other hygiene issues
Consult with a New Jersey Nursing Home Lawyer Today
When you are alerted that abuse may be impacting your loved one, call a New Jersey nursing home lawyer today. He or she can initiate the investigation into the potential abuse that may be impacting your loved one. It is important to do whatever it takes to end the abuse and get your loved one into a safe atmosphere. You can call us at any time to discuss your concerns and get started in filing a legal claim against nursing home administrators. We have lawyers available to help families throughout the state of New Jersey in areas such as:
Our lawyers will help take the burden off of you during this tragic time.
Nursing Home Negligence
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 2 years. (N.J. Stat. Ann. §2A:14-2)
- Punitive damages are capped at five times compensatory damages or $350,000, whichever is greater. (N.J. Stat. Ann. §2A:15-5.14(b))
STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 2 years from the date of death. (N.J. Stat. Ann. §2A:31-3)
- No punitive damages on wrongful death cases. Punitive damages may be pursued on survivorship claims. (N.J. Stat. Ann. §2A:15-5.14(b))
- Adult Protective Services Act – (N.J. Stat. Ann. §§52:27D-406 – 426)
- Suspicion of Abuse or Exploitation of Resident of Residential Health Care Facility – (N.J. Stat. Ann. §30:1A-3)
- Abandonment, Neglect of Elderly Person, Disabled Adult – (N.J. Stat. Ann. §2C:24-8)
- N.J.S.A 30:13-5. Nursing Home Residents’ Bill of Rights