Broward County, FL Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Nursing homes and assisted living facilities are tasked with providing for our elderly citizens at the most critical and vulnerable times. This also presents an opportunity for abuse to run rampant, causing untold harm to those who need sufficient care the most.
Nursing home abuse could come in forms such as physical violence, sexual abuse, infliction of emotional distress, financial crimes, or neglect. Any violation of the rights provided to nursing home residents by the federal government and the State of Florida could be grounds for a nursing home abuse lawsuit to recover damages for the harms inflicted by the abuse.
To learn more about your rights, your case, and the best step forward, reach out to the dedicated Broward County nursing home abuse attorneys at The Carrion Law Firm today. When you call us right now at (954) 951-4828, you can obtain a free initial case assessment.
Rights of Nursing Home Residents in Broward County, FL
Based on Part 483 of Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations, all nursing home residents have general rights to their basic needs in the facilities in which they reside. These include adequate food, water, shelter, hygienic and sanitary care, and medical care. A failure in any of these areas is not only a violation of federal law, but also grounds for a nursing home abuse lawsuit.
On top of the federal legislation that governs the safe and proper operation of nursing homes across the country, the State of Florida has passed additional laws that provide residents of nursing homes throughout the state, including Broward County, with certain rights. These rights generally come from Florida Statute of Public Health 400.022, and are summarized below.
Rights Regarding Medical Care
Nursing home residents in Broward County have the right to receive adequate and appropriate health care and support services according to established standards. They shall also enjoy the right to privacy in receiving this care. Residents must be treated courteously, fairly, and with dignity. This includes having a say in one’s own medical treatment if they are so able. Residents must be informed of diagnoses and proposed treatment plans, and have the right to refuse any treatment plan or seek a second opinion.
Rights of Association
Nursing home residents may invite or receive visitation from any individual providing health, social, legal, or other services at any time. This includes the ability to communicate freely with ombudsmen and advocacy groups. This right must exist free from any retaliation on the part of their nursing home facility. Residents may organize and participate in groups with other residents and participate in social, religious, and community activities that do not interfere with the rights of others.
Rights of Autonomy
Nursing home residents say in more than just their medical care. They have the right to manage their own financial affairs. If the facility manages an account on the resident’s behalf, the facility must present quarterly accountings for the resident’s consideration. In some cases, the resident may grant power of attorney to another individual to manage their medical and financial matters if the resident’s present condition renders them unable to handle these responsibilities themselves. In these cases, these rights pass to whoever possesses the power of attorney.
Types of Nursing Home Abuse in Broward County, FL
Abuse in a nursing home comes in a variety of forms. When one thinks of abuse, the mind may jump to the classic types of physical abuse, such as assault. Slapping, kicking, and pushing residents down stairs are far too frequent in nursing homes. Sexual abuse is also particularly rampant in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. This is particularly troubling, as sexual abuse is both among the most common forms of abuse that nursing home residents experience and simultaneously the single type least likely to be reported.
Unwanted physical contact is not the only form of abuse in nursing homes. Emotional and psychological abuse can be just as harmful in different ways. Nursing home staff may engage in name-calling, public shaming, and deprivations of privacy, dignity, and free communication with others both inside and outside of the facility.
Financial abuse is also an issue in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. To facilitate the ability of residents to make purchases, facility administrators will often maintain a checking account for residents. This presents an opportunity ripe for embezzlement, or a person’s misuse of someone else’s financial assets for their own personal gain.
Abuse does not have to be intentionally harmful. Neglect is also considered a form of abuse. Nursing homes in Broward County struggle with lack of funding and insufficient staffing numbers, often resulting in the facility falling into disrepair or being unable to meet the basic necessities that their residents require.
What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse in Broward County, FL
If you or a loved one have experienced abuse or neglect while in the care of a Broward County nursing home or assisted care facility, you should look to report the situation to the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA). The government will follow up with an in-depth investigation into the situation and look to punish those responsible.
However, government action against the nursing home will not make the abuse victim whole. Nursing home abuse can cause serious physical, financial, and emotional damage, for which victims should be compensated. For your own personal monetary recovery, your best option is a civil injury lawsuit against those responsible.
While you are permitted to file a lawsuit on your own, using an experienced Broward County nursing home abuse lawyer in your legal efforts gives you a much better chance of success and avoids you having to deal with the nuances of a legal claim while also dealing with the consequences of your abuse.
Speak with a Broward County Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer for Free Today
When you call the dedicated Broward County nursing home abuse attorneys at The Carrion Law Firm at (954) 951-4828, you can obtain your first case assessment for free.