Information on Pennsylvania Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Lawsuit Case Values
Nationwide, the baby boomer generation is aging, and the elderly population is growing. Unfortunately, along with this growth comes an increase in the number of cases of elder abuse. In Pennsylvania, reports show that incidents of nursing home abuse are soaring, and the state’s Department of Aging must scramble to keep up with handling and responding to these reports. The volume of reported incidents of abuse in Pennsylvania has reportedly tripled in recent years.Types of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Found in Pennsylvania Nursing Homes
Recently, Pennsylvania has been more aggressive in pursuing abusive claims and several care centers were given hefty fines as a result of various forms of neglectful and abusive behaviors. Nursing home abuse and neglect exists in many varieties, and it is vital to know what constitutes abuse and neglect. Some examples include:
- Physical Abuse
Any intentional physical injury such as hitting or slapping would constitute assault and lead to criminal prosecution as well as civil liability for damages.
- Injuries From Inadequate Care
Failure to regularly reposition patients may lead to the formation of bed sores. Nursing home staff must also ensure residents have clean clothes, bedding, and living quarters to prevent the spread of disease and infections.
- Sexual Abuse
Any unwelcome sexual touching or forcing a resident to view pornographic material constitutes sexual abuse. Sexual battery and rape may also lead to severe criminal penalties.
- Falling Injuries
Nursing homes must assess each resident’s individual falling risk and take appropriate steps to prevent falls.
- Medication Errors
Nursing home staff responsible for administering patient medications must follow prescribing doctors’ orders exactly.
- Wrongful Death
Abuse or neglect can cause a resident’s health to deteriorate to the point of death. Any sudden death in a nursing home requires an immediate investigation.
Pennsylvania state law enforces mandatory reporting requirements for various professionals and licensed agencies. However, even if you do not qualify as a mandatory reporter, you should report any incident of nursing home abuse or neglect to Adult Protective Services as soon as possible. Some of the most common signs of nursing home abuse and neglect include:
- Sudden unexplained injuries. If you visit your loved one and notice bruises, cuts, or fractures, investigate the cause of such injuries immediately.
- Diagnosis with a sexually transmitted infection. This is a common sign of sexual abuse in nursing homes.
- Sudden changes in personality. If your loved one appears depressed or withdrawn, he or she may feel isolated or scared to speak up about ongoing abuse.
- Bedsores. Pressure ulcers are completely preventable with proper care. If your loved one develops a bed sore it means caregivers are not repositioning him or her as required.
- Sudden death of unknown causes. If your loved one suddenly passed away after appearing in good health recently, this should be a major cause for concern and demand immediate investigation.
In the last decade, Pennsylvania has seen a six-fold increase in cases of elder abuse, but still many questions remain, and much goes unreported. It is vitally important for family members to watch over their loved ones for any signs of possible abuse and neglect.How Much Is My Pennsylvania Nursing Home Negligence Case Worth?
The economic damages available in a nursing home abuse or neglect case are relatively straightforward; plaintiffs may secure compensation for additional medical expenses or lost income resulting from the abuse or neglect.
Other damages, such as pain and suffering compensation for the victim and the family, are more challenging to determine. The age and medical condition of the victim, the severity and type of abuse or neglect suffered, and the conduct of the nursing home’s administration and leadership can all potentially influence the recovery amount for a nursing home abuse or neglect lawsuit.
A few examples of different potential settlement values include:
- Bedsore Settlements
- Fall Settlements
- Inadequate Care Settlements
- Medical Error Settlements
- Nursing Home Abuse Settlements
If you suspect your loved one has suffered from any kind of abuse or neglect in a Pennsylvania nursing home, we can help you determine your rights to recovery under Pennsylvania state laws. Contact us today to learn more about your options for legal recourse and the potential recovery available from a successful nursing home abuse or neglect lawsuit.