South Carolina Nursing Home Abuse Injury Lawyers Fight for Victims of Abuse and Neglect
McGowan, Hood & Felder, LLC, attorneys know the signs and types of injuries residents can suffer
According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, over three million people live in nursing homes. In one 2000 study, 44% of nursing home residents out of 2,000 interviewed complained of some sort of abuse. Most residents said they had been neglected or had witnessed another resident being neglected. Many nursing home residents rely on family members to report the abuse because the resident is too frail or afraid to report the abuse. For this reason, it is important to know the various types of nursing home abuse injuries and how to report them.
At McGowan, Felder & Hood, LLC, you can ask a South Carolina nursing home injury abuse lawyer about the ways residents are injured and the types of injuries they suffer. Patients can suffer abuse, which is conscionable harm, or neglect, which is usually the failure to provide for the safety of the resident.
Physical injuries nursing home patients can suffer
Assisted living facility residents are susceptible to a wide variety of painful and even life threatening injuries, including:
- Nursing home bed sores. Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, occur when a patient is not moved enough. Elderly residents often cannot turn over or shift positions without help from nursing staff. If staff does not move the patient, he or she can suffer these sores. Bedsores can cause damage to the bones, muscles, and joints. Some untreated bedsores can even be fatal. Complications from bedsores can include sepsis, infections, cellulitis, and even cancer. Nursing homes should be on the constant lookout for bedsores.
- Slips and falls. Many elder patients have problems with mobility. This can be due to balance issues – legs, hips, and feet that do not work properly – and other causes. For this reason, nursing home staff should secure the patient to make sure he or she does not fall. Nursing homes need to provide for bedrails and other safety factors. Walkers and wheelchairs should be used when necessary. Slips and falls can cause broken bones, nerve damage, and other serious complications.
- Malnutrition and dehydration. Many facilities do not let residents feed themselves and often have strict timelines for eating and drinking. Common injuries from a lack of proper nourishment can include muscle weakness, brittle or malformed nails, dry skin, chronic diarrhea, anemia, and joint point. Dehydration can result in dry skin, constipation, a failure to sweat, headaches, fever, heart problems, and changes in blood pressure. Lack of food and drink can also cause cognitive and emotional problems. In extreme cases, a resident can die because of malnutrition.
- Unexpected deaths. All of these problems – bed sores, falls, malnutrition, dehydration – along with other problems such as bleeding can cause a patient to die if they are not treated in a timely and correct manner. When the nursing home fails to protect the resident, a South Carolina nursing home abuse and neglect injury attorney reports the misconduct to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control to start an investigation. We can also sue the nursing facility and others responsible on behalf of the family for wrongful death.
Sexual abuse in nursing homes
Sexual abuse injuries include rape, sexual assault, sodomy, inappropriate touching, sexual photographs, and sexual harassment. Sometimes injuries can be seen through a thorough medical examination of the senior. Many of the signs of sexual misconduct are emotional. Some of the signs of abuse include:
- Vaginal or anal bleeding
- Bruising, irritation, or cuts in the genital areas, breasts, and buttocks
- Underclothing that is torn
- Sexually transmitted infections or diseases
- Depression or a lack of communication
Emotional trauma often accompanies an injury, so paying close attention to your loved one is crucial when looking for signs of abuse. Just because you don’t see a physical injury doesn’t mean some harm was not done. We investigate claims of injuries as the result of abusive or neglectful practice at South Carolina nursing homes, and make a case for compensation for your loved one.
Injured nursing home residents have the right to get justice
Most injuries to nursing home residents can be avoided if state and federal regulations are followed and if the nursing facility plans for common issues. If an elder resident is injured in a nursing home, one of our South Carolina nursing home injury lawyers can help. We have been helping injured victims for several decades to get full compensation for their injuries.
Please call us 803-327-7800 for a free consultation with one of our lawyers – or submit our contact form. We serve clients across South Carolina and have offices in Anderson, Columbia, Georgetown, Rock Hill, and Sumter.