A startling trend of nursing home neglect has begun to emerge in recent years. Even worse, cases of nursing home neglect have been shown to be treated far less severely than the neglect of children and even that of animals. It has been revealed that the number of nursing home deaths and injuries caused by neglect or abuse is severely underreported.
Some of the harrowing statistics of nursing home neglect include:
- As many as 5,000,000 elders being abused each year
- Only 1 in 14 incidents being formally reported
- The New York State Elder Abuse Prevalence study suggests a more severe number of only 1 in 25 incidents being formally reported
- 14% of self-reported elder abuses are due to neglect (which includes gross neglect)
- Neglect is considered as the failure to provide basic life necessities to these elders
- 69.8% of nursing homes in the U.S. are for-profit businesses, with the goal towards making money
- Women are more likely to be abused/neglected than men
- Approximately 50% of people with dementia are abused/neglected
- Confidentially, over 50% of nursing home staff have admitted to some form of abuse
A sad example of this abuse and neglect is that of Mary Hicks Cole, who died on January 23, 2011, after lying alone in a dark storage room for four days at the Liberty Nursing Rehabilitation Center. Mary, who suffered from Alzheimer’s disease, was found in the storage room by a staff member. She was dehydrated and sick with pneumonia. What makes this case even worse, is the fact that the storage room was on the very same floor of the Alzheimer’s unit which Mary was staying in.
Mary’s daughter pursued a nursing home negligence lawsuit, as although the state fined the center $10,000 per day until it fixed its many health and safety problems (which were uncovered during an investigation), she wanted the person in charge of her mother’s death to take criminal responsibility for what transpired.
Another case of nursing negligence resulted in the death of an 88-year-old patient in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who died in 2011 after she was locked outside the nursing home overnight in 40-degree weather.
Because nursing home neglect is treated much less severely than other forms of neglect, it may be extremely difficult for you to file a nursing negligence medical malpractice lawsuit. This can be compounded by the gross lack of accountability within nursing homes, and so your best plan of action is to consult with a qualified medical malpractice lawyer.
Your NYC medical malpractice lawyer will explain to you that nursing negligence is a kind of medical malpractice that occurs when a nurse does not care for you or for your family member in a way that a competent nurse should. Ultimately, nursing negligence occurs when the nurse/s involved do not adhere to the standard of care of the nursing profession which they are a part of. If this is the case, then you likely have grounds to open a nursing negligence medical malpractice lawsuit.
Medical malpractice law differs between states, and so your consultation should be with an NYC medical malpractice attorney if you live in NYC. They will be able to guide you through the necessary medical malpractice lawsuit procedural steps specific to the state that needs to take place, as well as advise you on the statute of limitations that you need to abide by.
If you believe that you or a family member may have been a victim of nursing negligence in a nursing home, please contact the medical malpractice lawyers of Rosenburg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff LLP in NYC. You can speak to one of our medical malpractice attorneys who are always ready to listen.
Call 1-866-516-5887 for a free, confidential consultation.