West Virginia Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorneys

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Throughout the United States, nursing home abuse has become an issue of national concern. The National Center on Elderly Abuse shows that only 15 percent of all cases involving physical abuse are reported every year. There were over 5,900,000 actual cases of elderly abuse in 2010, so it is disheartening to consider the numerous cases of physical abuse, neglect or exploitation that went unreported in that year. If you feel that your loved one may be in an abusive situation, you should speak up and not allow his or her case to go unreported.

According to information managed by Medicare, there are currently 124 nursing homes rated in West Virginia that are regularly monitored through surveys, investigations and inspections. The federal agency found serious violations and deficiencies at fifty-two (42%) of these West Virginia nursing facilities that harmed their residents. Was your loved one injured, abused, mistreated, or did they die unexpectedly from neglect after living in a West Virginia nursing home? If so, we invite you to contact the West Virginia nursing home abuse attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center today. Let us begin processing your claim for compensation during your free case review to ensure your family receives the monetary recover they deserve.

A University of California-San Francisco research study tracked nursing home abuse patterns of West Virginia nursing homes for 2008, and the results are startling. The research study indicated that over 40 percent of nursing homes were unable to maintain a safe environment. Over 54 percent of nursing homes had serious issues with food sanitation, as well as maintaining a high quality of care and developing comprehensive care plans. Family members should also be concerned about whether a loved one is developing bedsores, as statistics also show that patients in over 19 percent of West Virginia nursing homes were at risk for developing bedsores. If your loved one has already developed bedsores as a result of inadequate care or attention, then a nursing home lawyer may be able to assist you with your case.

West Virginia Nursing Home Laws

West Virginia Nursing Home Abuse AttorneysThere are strict West Virginia nursing home laws in place to protect elderly people in nursing homes. The Adult Protective Services Act is the governing source of authority for nursing homes in the state. The Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987 is a federal law that also clearly states the many rights that nursing home residents have. Under the Nursing Home Reform Act of 1987, elderly people have the right to receive the medical care that they require, to be treated with respect and dignity, to be free from physical or chemical restraints and to be free from abuse, exploitation or neglect.

When family members suspect that a loved one is the victim of abuse, then they may file reports of abuse with the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services, Adult Protective Services or the Bureau of Senior Services.

In West Virginia, there is only a limited period of time in which family members may file a negligence or wrongful death claim on behalf of a loved one. For a negligence claim, family members only have a period of two years to file a claim within discovery of the injury. The noneconomic damages for a medical malpractice claim are limited to $250,000 for each occurrence. There is a cap of $500,000 for all of the injuries that loved ones have suffered.

A wrongful death claim may be filed within two years of the date of death of an individual. The noneconomic damages for medical malpractice are limited to $250,000 for each occurrence of negligence that impacted a loved one. There is a cap of $500,000 for injuries that involved serious deformities, the loss of use of a limb or other permanent physical injuries.

The Signs of Abuse and Victimization in Nursing Homes

There are certain signs that can alert family members that a loved one is being subjected to abuse and victimization in a nursing home. The following are signs of abuse and victimization:

  • Inability to speak around others, especially nursing home workers
  • Depression, anxiety and sleeplessness
  • Physical abrasions, scratches and bruises
  • Desires to be isolated from family members and friends
  • Denial of abuse or victimization
  • Torn or stained clothing
  • Unexplained bleeding
  • Broken bones
  • Signs of restraint, such as red markings on the wrist
  • Nursing home workers refuse to allow the victim to be alone with family members
Call Our West Virginia Nursing Home Lawyers for Immediate Help

When a loved one is being subjected to this type of abuse, it is important to call nursing home lawyers for help. West Virginia elder abuse lawyers can help you to deal with nursing home abuse and end the abuse or neglect of a loved one. Our lawyers are waiting to help families throughout West Virginia in areas such as:

Talk to our West Virginia elder abuse lawyers to schedule an initial consultation today.

West Virginia Lawyers Serving Victims of Bed Sores, Pressure Sores & Decubitus Ulcers

Most West Virginia nursing facilities are filled to capacity. This is because the average age of Americans continues to rise as more individuals are living in their retirement years. Because of that, there has been a significant increase in the demand for quality health caregivers. As a result, there are far less properly trained nurses and nurse aides to meet the increasing need.

Many nursing facilities throughout the state of West Virginia have been cited by the CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) for negligence, abuse or inattention to patients under their care. Even with the citations, much of the negligence and abuse continues, where patients are victimized in various ways. Without proper monitoring due to unskilled caregivers or minimal staffing, many patients in nursing facilities develop pressure ulcers that are often so severe that the quality of their lives are substantially diminished.

A Serious Health Problem: Pressure Sores

West Virginia Pressure SoreThe medical team in West Virginia nursing homes are duty bound to provide routine skin monitoring to patients, especially those who have compromised mobility. When the skin is not assessed every day, the patient can easily develop a pressure sore (pressure ulcer; decubitus ulcer; bedsore).

Pressure sores are serious health problems that can develop in as little as a few hours when continuous body pressure pushes down on a pad, mattress, cushion or chair. The pressure restricts blood circulation to the skin causing it permanent damage. Some parts of the body are more susceptible to developing a bedsore than others. These include:

  • Hipbones, buttocks, sacrum and spine
  • Shoulder blades, shoulders and the back of the head
  • Back of the knees and elbows
  • Toes, heels and ankles

Nearly every type of pressure sore can be prevented through a simple readjustment of the body every couple of hours. Turning or repositioning the body alleviates the pressure and minimizes the potential of skin damage or tissue death at the affected site. Because the condition is so easily avoided, most pressure sores acquired in a nursing facility are the result of negligence.

Call (800) 926-7565 Toll-Free for a No Obligation Consultation

Through constant monitoring, the nursing staff can ensure that every mobility-challenged patient bound to a wheelchair or bedridden is provided special care that includes:

  • Quality nutritional food
  • Proper hydration
  • Routine repositioning
  • Daily skin inspections
  • Pressure-relieving padding and bedding materials

When the above basic necessities to high-risk patients are disregarded, and the resident develops a bedsore, the medical staff can be held legally liable for their negligence.

Practices and Protocols Needed to Identify & Treat Pressure Sores in West Virginia Medical Facilities

West Virginia nursing facilities are obligated to follow medically accepted practices and protocols proven effective at preventing bedsores. In addition, the doctors and nurses are required to develop an effective health plan for every patient upon their admittance to the home. Through implementation of the plan, the patient must be given the best medical care to minimize the potential of developing a sore. If admitted with an existing bedsore, the staff must develop an effective plan to provide quality treatment to start the healing process.

When an existing pressure sore is allowed to progress to an advanced stage, the staff and facility can be held responsible for their negligence. As a result, many families hire a West Virginia pressure ulcer lawyer who specializes in medical malpractice lawsuits. The nursing home attorney can take legal steps to stop the negligence, inattention or abuse immediately.

In addition, the law firm can ensure that the patient receives quality medical care from trained personnel who specialize in treating life threatening decubitus ulcers. The professionals provide their services in cities all throughout West Virginia including:

  • Charleston
  • Huntington
  • Parkersburg
  • Wheeling
  • Morgantown

Fill in the contact form here to speak with a reputable West Virginia pressure ulcer lawyer listed below. These experienced law firms can accept your case on contingency to help you avoid paying any upfront fees. Your attorney can file a claim demanding financial compensation for the pain, suffering and losses your loved one has endured because of the negligence caused by an irresponsible medical staff.

Call (800) 926-7565 Toll-Free for a No Obligation Consultation
Nursing Home Negligence

STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS

  • 2 years with Discovery Rule. (W. Va. Code. §55-2-12)
  • Medical malpractice – 2 years with Discovery Rule, but no later than 10 years after the date of injury. Minors under age ten have 2 years from injury or until age twelve, whichever is longer. (W. Va. Code. §55-7B-4)

DAMAGES CAP

  • Noneconomic damages for medical malpractice are limited to 250,000 per occurrence, regardless of the number of defendants. The cap is $500,000 for injuries involving permanent and substantial physical deformity, loss of use of a limb or loss of a bodily organ system; or permanent physical or mental functional injury that permanently prevents the injured person from being able to independently care for himself or herself and perform life sustaining activities. On January 1, 2004, both compensatory damage limitations will be adjusted to account for inflation. (W. Va. Code. §55-7B-8)

Wrongful Death

STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS

DAMAGES CAP

  • Noneconomic damages for medical malpractice are limited to 250,000 per occurrence, regardless of the number of defendants. The cap is $500,000 for injuries involving permanent and substantial physical deformity, loss of use of a limb or loss of a bodily organ system; or permanent physical or mental functional injury that permanently prevents the injured person from being able to independently care for himself or herself and perform life sustaining activities. On January 1, 2004, both compensatory damage limitations will be adjusted to account for inflation. (W. Va. Code. §55-7B-8)

State Resources

Nursing Home Care State Law

Related Articles Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Resources
Client Reviews
★★★★★
Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa
★★★★★
After I read Jonathan’s Nursing Home Blog, I decided to hire him to look into my wife’s treatment at a local nursing home. Jonathan did a great job explaining the process and the laws that apply to nursing homes. I immediately felt at ease and was glad to have him on my side. Though the lawsuit process was at times frustrating, Jonathan reassured me, particularly at my deposition. I really felt like Jonathan cared about my wife’s best interests, and I think that came across to the lawyers for the nursing home. Eric