Assisted living abuse in Oklahoma is serious and harms our vulnerable senior population. Moving a loved one into a nursing home or assisted living can be a difficult and nerve-wracking decision. Will your loved one receive the care, respect, and protection that they deserve? Sadly, some nursing home residents don’t. If your loved one is neglected and suffers an injury at an Oklahoma nursing home or assisted living, you don’t have to take it. The State has many regulations designed to set minimum standards for care. Read on for information on things to look for and some common themes to know in nursing home abuse cases.
Assisted Living Abuse Explained
Oklahoma’s Nursing Home and Assisted Living Care Act protects nursing home residents from abuse and neglect and allows you to hold responsible a nursing home that harms your loved one. Has your loved one been harmed? Consider the following.
Look for signs of abuse, including
- Physical abuse (for example, bruises, cuts, burns, and open wounds)
- Sexual abuse (for example, genital or anal bruising or bleeding, or any non-consensual sexual contact)
- Emotional or psychological abuse (for example, does your loved one seem upset, disturbed, or frightened?), and
- Financial abuse (for example, stealing a resident’s money or goods).
And look for signs of neglect, including
- Pressure sores or bedsores (which can mean that the nursing home is not moving a resident who is unable to move)
- Broken bones and bruising (which can mean that the nursing home is allowing the resident to fall)
- Malnutrition or dehydration (which can mean that the nursing home isn’t giving the resident enough food or water); and
- Soiled clothing or bedding or other unsanitary conditions (which can mean that the nursing home isn’t taking care of your loved one’s personal hygiene).
What Are Common Themes In Nursing Home Abuse Cases?
Nursing home abuse and neglect cases tend to share common themes. Look for the following, and ask yourself these questions:
- Do staff members appear to be incompetent, unqualified, or untrained? The nursing home may be cutting corners with its staff, increasing the likelihood of abuse and neglect.
- Can you not find staff members when you need them? The nursing home may be short-staffed, creating the conditions for abuse and neglect.
- Do residents have unexplained falls or broken bones? The nursing home may not have enough staff to help residents get around.
- Do residents have bedsores? The nursing home may not have enough staff to move residents who can’t move independently, leaving residents to lie in their urine or feces.
- Do residents beg for food or water? The nursing home may not have enough staff to feed and give water to residents.
If you see one or more of these conditions at a nursing home, it may be a place where abuse and neglect can happen.
What Can I Recover?
In a successful nursing home abuse case, you may be able to recover damages including:
- Compensation for pain and suffering and emotional anguish
- Medical expenses (past and future)
- Attorney fees, and
- Punitive damages (in some cases).
In addition, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you held responsible those who caused your loved one’s abuse and neglect. Furthermore, you may have prevented the nursing home from abusing and neglecting other residents.
If Your Loved One Is At Risk, Don’t Wait
If you think that a loved one may be in danger because of nursing home abuse or neglect, don’t wait—nursing home abuse and neglect can lead to death or the shortening of a resident’s life. This kind of neglect is serious and harms some of the most vulnerable people in our society. Abuse like this, when serious enough, can even be considered criminal. In addition to compensatory damages the courts in Oklahoma often times award punitive damages designed to punish the assisted care facility.
Tulsa Assisted Living Attorney Near You
If you or someone you know has fallen victim to nursing home assisted living abuse, it can be hard to know what to do next. Hiring an experienced nursing home abuse attorney can help you protect your rights and interests and obtain the compensation you deserve. The experienced attorneys at Kania Law Office are ready to hear your case and fight for you. To learn more or to schedule an initial case consultation, call us at (918) 743-2233 or Click here to Ask a Legal Question.