legal resources necessary to hold negligent facilities accountable.
Tennessee Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorneys
Over the last decade, more than forty percent of Tennessee nursing homes were cited for having an accident-prone environment, and over thirty percent of the state's elder homes had issues with maintaining professional standards.
Unfortunately, many violations resulted in serious injury or death to nursing home residents.
Even worse, statistics from the University of California-San Francisco study indicate that over nineteen percent of all TN nursing homes continue to have infection control issues.
A facility's failure to follow safety protocols could mean that someone you love might be at risk for developing pneumonia or contagious illnesses from other residents.
A Tennessee Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Can Help You & Your Loved One
Are you concerned that someone you love might be the victim of nursing home abuse and neglect?
Speak with Tennessee personal injury attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center today. Our legal team will investigate the nursing center's standard of care and identify any failures to meet federal and state laws.
Throughout the year, Medicare gathers statistical information on the 316 nursing homes rated in the state based on investigations and surveys.
According to the national center, currently, 106 (thirty-four percent) of these nursing homes have fallen below the national average and now provide their residents' substandard care.
Tennessee Elder Abuse Laws Protecting Nursing Home ResidentsSeveral state and federal laws protect residents in senior homes and long-term care facilities. These statutes are the Adult Protection Act, Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities/Licensing of Services and Facilities Act, Rights of Nursing Home Patients Act, and Registry of Persons Who Have Abused, Neglected, or Misappropriated the Property of Vulnerable Individuals Act.
The State of Tennessee has laws requiring nursing facilities to register on a public database when they have engaged in residents' financial exploitation by stealing cash or credit cards. This vital measure has been used to end elder financial exploitation.
The Adult Protection Act requires anyone to file a written and oral report when they have reasonable cause to believe that a vulnerable adult has been abused. When an individual is aware of this abuse, they must file a report.
Otherwise, the failure to report abuse or neglect makes a person criminally liable and maybe a misdemeanor. After a report is made, a department will need to take steps to end the exploitation and abuse of vulnerable adults.
The state statute provides immunity to any employee reporting mistreatment incidents. Immunity ensures that the Administrator or facility cannot discriminate against the worker for filing the report.
The facility's Administrator must cooperate with the law enforcement investigation. The victim's family members might also wish to hire a nursing home abuse lawyer to participate in the investigation.
The victim's nursing home abuse lawyer will likely gather photographic evidence, obtain the employee's testimony, do samples of contaminated food or other evidence proving the abuse or neglect.
Was someone you love injured, mistreated, abused, or did they die unexpectedly from neglect while living in a TN nursing facility?
If so, please contact the nursing home abuse lawyers at the Nursing Home Law Center today to begin a claim for financial compensation. Let us evaluate the merits of your case during a free review.
Understanding the Legal Rights of Loved Ones in Nursing HomesEvery care patient has clear rights spelled out in the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987. The law protects victims of elder abuse.
A Tennessee home lawyer working for the victim can research what happened in the rights that might have been violated.
The following are examples (types of abuse) where the actions of others violated the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 involve:
- Private patient medical records are viewed by unauthorized individuals (HIPAA violation)
- Inadequate social and physical therapy programs exist
- A proper care plan was never developed for your the patient by healthcare providers
- Medications are not administered consistently by home staff
- Psychological abuse or mental abuse
- Employees and staff members treat residents with disrespect and vulgarity
- Sedative drugs and physical restraints are used to control patients
Tennessee Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect FAQs
Below are some questions raised by families who have a loved one who has been a victim of nursing home abuse. Our lawyers appreciate that these questions may give rise to others.
Consequently, we welcome you to contact our nursing home abuse lawyers for a free consultation where they can address your concerns and legal options available for holding a negligent facility accountable for elder abuse.
What Are The Signs of Nursing Home Abuse?
Nursing home residents are highly vulnerable to all forms of abuse and neglect, including physical abuse and sexual assault, emotional distress, neglect, and exploitation.
The most common signs of mistreatment include:
- Black eyes, bruising, lacerations, rope marks, welts
- Broken bones
- Reports of being slapped, kicked, hit, or punched
- Puncture wounds, cuts, open sores, and unexplained injuries
- Unexpected changes in behavior
- Unexplained anal or vaginal bleeding
- Genital infections and venereal diseases
- Unexpected weight loss
- Bruising in the genital area or around the breasts
- Bloodied, stained, or torn underclothing
- Malnutrition and dehydration
- Pressure sores
- Victim reports of being sexually raped, sodomized, or assaulted
- Emotional agitation
- Nervousness around specific individuals
- Withdrawn or non-responsive behavior
- Unsanitary rooms
- Dangerous, hazardous, or unsafe conditions
- Inadequate medical care
- A failure to administer prescribed medications
Who Perpetrates Tennessee Nursing Home Abuse?A physical, mental, emotional, or financial abuse could be anyone providing care or visiting a nursing facility patient. Abusers can be male and female, family members, intimate partners, caregivers, and friends, including those related by marriage, blood, past relationships, or affinity (in-laws).
Victims are often the most vulnerable adults and children harmed through physical abuse, coercion, threats, intimidation, sexual abuse, emotional assault, isolation, blaming, or financial exploitation.
Many abusive cases go unreported, leading the victim to blame themselves in part or whole for what occurred, followed by the shame of what happened.
What Are The 4 Types of Home Abuse and Neglect?According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), the four common types of abuse in nursing centers include:
- Physical abuse including bullying (intimidation), physical and chemical restraint, aggression, isolation, and endangerment
- Mental abuse involving projection, manipulation, blaming, staring, displays of rage, using the silent treatment, playing the victim card, and gaslighting
- Verbal assault, including screaming, intimidating words, personal attacks, blame games, not apologizing, projecting vocal insults, and derogatory talk
- Sexual abuse and assault involving jealousy and rage, coercion, ultimatums, fear tactics, rape, sodomy, selfish appeals, sadistic acts, degrading sex, indecent exposure, and improper touching
What Does Nursing Home Neglect Look Like?Many neglect and mistreatment cases in nursing facilities go unreported, leading to the patient's health decline and eventual death. The nursing home staff might neglect the vulnerable adult in many ways, including not assisting with:
- Personal hygiene
- Basic needs
- Medical care
- Emotional support
Unfortunately, neglect often leads to the patient's health decline struggling to survive.
In severe cases of nursing home neglect, the nursing staff might fail to care for a resident with diabetes, administer pain medications to those in distress, or treat skin ulcers that might degrade into systemic infections.
Is a Bed Sore a Sign of Nursing Home Abuse?Yes, bed sores are one of the most common types of nursing home abuse. They are an indication not only of poor care, but also a broken system where nursing home staff repeatedly fail to meet the care needs of patients.
A decubitus ulcer (pressure ulcers, pressure sore, bedsore) occurs when blood circulation is restricted to skin and underlying tissue by pressure on the body part.
The most common areas at risk for developing a sore are bony prominences that make continuous contact with a chair, mattress, bedding material, or cushion. These areas include:
- Ankles and heels
- Sacrum and buttocks
- Shoulder blades and shoulders
- Neck and the back of the head
Without proper blood circulation, the skin is deprived of necessary oxygen. Within a short period of time, the skin's dermis and epidermis layers are compromised and begin inflaming. During the early stage, skin ulcers usually appear as tiny red dots or noticeable blisters, where the surrounding skin is softer or firmer than the wound.
What are The Stages of Decubitus Ulcers & How They Relate To A Wound's Severity?
The medical community categorizes decubitus ulcers in four specific stages. In its early stage, the condition is reversed quickly when appropriately treated. However, at its advanced stage, the condition becomes life-threatening. The stages include:
Stage I – In its initial stage, the wound appears as a reddened area where the skin has been deprived of oxygen. The compromised tissue could quickly heal within days if no additional pressure is allowed at the site until the condition is resolved.
Stage II –Without treatment, the pressure wound can decline to an advanced stage, forming a shallow creator at the affected site. Sometimes, fatty deposits can be seen at the bottom of the small crater.
Stage III –If the pressure wound advances to this critical stage, the shallow crater deepens, exposing muscle tissue below. Usually, at this stage, a knowledgeable team of medical professionals trained to assist patients with a life-threatening wound is required as a treatment intervention. Usually, debridement is performed where any dead or dying tissue is cut away, beginning the healing process.
Stage IV – At this most advanced age, the patient is at risk of dying from bone infection (osteomyelitis) or blood infection (sepsis). Typically, a Stage IV decubitus ulcer involves exposure of the bone, muscles, and tendons. Experienced medical wound specialists must take drastic immediate measures to save the patient's life.
Can I File a Lawsuit Against a TN Nursing Home Where My Loved One Developed a Bed Sore?Yes, the majority of bed sore cases are due to the negligence of the nursing home and a legal claim can be brought against the facility to recover compensation for your loss.
Facility-acquired skin ulcers are often a sign of negligence or inattentiveness by the medical team. The CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) requires the nursing staff to follow established protocols to reverse nearly every pressure sore during the early stage.
If the patient has been provided quality care, proper nutrition, and hydration, the potential of developing a wound should have been eliminated.
Any family member recognizing that their loved one is suffering a life-threatening pressure ulcer should speak with a nursing home abuse lawyer to take legal action.
The attorneys can hold every responsible party legally accountable for their negligence and ensure that the loved one receives proper health care from outside medical professionals.
Find available injury abuse attorneys to assist with the investigation or prosecution of a nursing home abuse case involving skin sores or other injuries on the pages below:
- Memphis, TN Nursing Home Abuse & Pressure Wound Lawyers
- Nashville, TN Nursing Home & Pressure Sore Lawyers
- Knoxville Nursing Home Neglect & Pressure Ulcer Attorneys
- Chattanooga Skin Sore & Nursing Home Neglect Attorneys
- Clarksville Pressure Sore & Nursing Home Attorneys
Fill out the form here to schedule an appointment with reputable TN decubitus ulcer lawyers.
What Compensation is Available in a Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Lawsuit?
If you can demonstrate that a facility's negligence resulted in an injury to your loved one, you can recover compensation for both economic and non-economic damages under Tennessee law.
Examples of recoverable compensation include:
- Medical expenses for past and future medical care for the injury
- The cost of your loved one's nursing home care
- Pain and suffering your family member endured due to physical abuse or neglect
- Punitive damages
Seek Immediate Assistance from a Tennessee Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Any victimization in an abusive situation at a nursing home is alarming, overwhelming, and scary. A TN nursing home abuse lawyer is here to ease your concerns by fighting for the rights of someone you love.
Our nursing home neglect lawyers are eager to help residents throughout the state in the following localities:
- Johnson City
- Memphis TN
- Nashville, TN
An experienced elderly abuse attorney can help your family today.
Tennessee Nursing Home Negligence LawsSTATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 1 year with Discovery Rule. (Tenn. Code Ann. §28-3-104)
- Medical malpractice – 1 year with Discovery Rule, but no later than three years after the date on which the negligent act or omission occurred, unless the action involves a foreign object. (Tenn. Code Ann. §29-26-116)
Wrongful DeathSTATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
- 1 year. (Tenn. Code Ann. §28-3-104)
- TN Department of Health
- Adult Protective Services
- Commission on Aging and Disability
- Long Term Care Ombudsman
- Adult Protection Act – (Tenn. Code Ann. §§71-6-101-20)
- Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, Licensing of Services and Facilities – (Tenn. Code Ann. §33-2-402)
- Rights of Nursing Home Patients – (Tenn. Code Ann. §68-11-9)
- Registry of Persons Who Have Abused, Neglected, or Misappropriated the Property of Vulnerable Individuals – (Tenn. Code Ann. §§68-11-10)
Contact our law firm today or through the contact form to schedule a free consultation. All discussions with our personal injury lawyers remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship.
Our attorneys follow social distancing guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus).
Call (800) 926-7565 Toll-Free for a No-Obligation Consultation
Information on Tennessee Nursing Home Abuse & Negligence Lawsuits
Our attorneys have compiled data from settlements and jury verdicts across the state to give you an idea as to how cases are valued. Learn more about the cases below: