Las Vegas Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Placing your loved one in a nursing home in Nevada is not a straightforward decision. When the time comes to act, the possibility of your loved one facing abuse and neglect may be the last thing on your mind.
Unfortunately, nursing home abuse occurs more frequently than you may think. It might happen to a parent, grandparent, or another relative. You need a skilled Nevada nursing home abuse lawyer on your side to help you understand the legal system and research what happened to your loved one.
At Berberian Ain LLP, we are dedicated to helping families in Las Vegas, Nevada understand the signs of nursing home abuse and nursing home abuse law. To receive the justice you and your family deserve, choose to work with the top nursing home abuse lawyers in Nevada. For a no-obligation consultation, please contact us today.
Nursing Home Abuse: How Common is It?
Nursing home abuse happens to millions of people and their families every year. One out of every ten Americans aged 60 and over has been a victim of elder abuse. According to some estimates, up to five million elderly adults experience abuse every year.
90% of elder abuse happens among older people who live in a community setting, compared to other communal living situations. In these settings, two out of three nursing home or long-term care facility staff members have reported abusing their patients.
According to the U.S. Justice Department, the rate of nursing home abuse cases that go unreported varies, depending on the type of elder abuse:
- Caregiver neglect
- Financial exploitation
- Physical abuse
- Psychological abuse
The Reasons for Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home abuse can happen because of financial and staffing issues with the management of nursing homes. These are common causes of nursing home abuse:
Underreported staffing levels: Nursing home administrators must report any issues to the government. Misrepresenting the number of employees on staff from the government, residents, or residents’ families might have major implications for adequate care in the nursing home. Residents in nursing homes may face the risk of falls and injuries from a lack of trained staff to monitor and care for them.
Underpaid staff members: Running a nursing home can be expensive, including keeping essential nursing staff members. Those unwilling to pay rates commensurate with their expectations will probably have several vacancies.
High turnover: Aside from low wages, a low level of trained nurses and hygienic facilities can make staff members leave a nursing home. They often work overtime caring for many patients, dealing with high stress and exhaustion.
Types of Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home abuse can take many forms beyond physical abuse. The following are examples of nursing home abuse:
This type of abuse can include hitting, striking, and kicking. Using physical restraints or overmedicating patients also constitutes nursing home abuse. Head injuries, fractures, or sprains are some signs of physical injuries from nursing home abuse.
Non-consensual sexual conduct of any kind with a person is considered sexual abuse. Inappropriate touching, groping, and unwanted nudity are all forms of sex abuse that involve force or when a person cannot give consent.
Emotional or psychological abuse
Shouting, insulting, and threats of physical violence can inflict anguish and suffering. Social isolation of elderly residents from their friends and family is another form of psychological abuse.
Financial abuse includes identity theft, cashing checks with someone else’s signature, and making purchases using someone else’s credit card.
Neglect occurs when a caregiver fails to adequately provide for a senior’s essential needs, including food, water, clothing, medications, and other living necessities.
When an elderly person refuses or does not seek help, this is known as self-neglect. This might involve the rejection of food, drink, hygiene, medication, and safety precautions.
Abandonment occurs when a caregiver abandons an elderly person physically or by giving up their responsibility for caring for them.
Warning Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Family members should be alert for signs of abuse when visiting their loved ones at their nursing home or assisted living facility. Some of the most common signs of nursing home abuse include:
- Unexplainable financial transactions and loss of cash
- Changes in your loved one’s behavior or personality like anxiety and depression
- Signs of neglect such as malnourishment, weight loss, bedsores, and infections
- Unexplained injuries like fractures and bruising
- Poor living conditions and hygiene throughout the facility
- Staff members’ abusive or domineering behavior toward residents or substantial friction between residents and their caregivers
What Rights Do Nevada Nursing Home Residents Have?
Nevada’s 1987 Nursing Home Reform Law requires all nursing homes to care for their residents to promote a better quality of life. They need to follow treatment plans created with the residents, their families, and legal representatives. Nursing homes must provide adequate services to help residents maintain their physical, mental, and emotional well-being.
Under Nevada’s nursing home bill of rights, nursing home residents who need long-term care and support have specific legal protections. Each nursing home resident has the right to:
- Privacy of their own
- Take part in discussions about their care and treatment plan and have access to their documents
- Express complaints with no fear of retaliation or prejudice
- Be free of unreasonable restraints
- Join in social, religious, and community organizations
- Use a phone in a private setting
- Handle their financial affairs
Nursing homes should never deprive your loved ones of their rights to make independent decisions for their care and treatment. If you believe a violation of your loved one’s rights has happened, you can meet with a Las Vegas nursing home abuse attorney to learn more about the nursing home abuse reporting requirements.
How To Report Nursing Home Abuse
Contact Adult Protective Services (APS) at the Aging and Disability Services Division (ADSD) at:
- Las Vegas/Clark County: (702) 486-6930
- Statewide/All other areas: (888) 729-0571
If you suspect your loved one is in immediate danger, call 911.
If you notice neglect and other issues in the nursing home, submit a complaint with the Division of Public and Behavioral Health (DPBH). You can report nursing home abuse in the following ways:
- File your complaint online
- Fill out the complaint form and mail or fax it
- Call Nevada’s nursing home abuse hotline at (702) 668-3250
Let the division know the exact type of nursing home abuse so they can respond appropriately. The DPBH prioritizes nursing home abuse reporting according to the level of severity. They investigate cases with the potential for serious injury within one to ten days, and investigations for minor injuries start within 45 days of reporting.
In addition to reporting to the relevant state agencies, you also need to contact a Nevada nursing home abuse attorney to understand your legal options. They can draw from their experience in understanding elder abuse law and helping you with receiving compensation for your loved one.
Contact Our Las Vegas Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
When you notice your loved one is experiencing abuse in a nursing home, a Las Vegas nursing home attorney can help you with the legal process of filing a lawsuit. Working with an experienced nursing home abuse law firm such as Berberian Ain LLP may help achieve the maximum settlement and hold the liable parties accountable for the abuse and neglect of your loved one.
Contact our law firm today to schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers by filling out our online form or calling us at 818-808-0048.