Patients in hospitals and nursing homes entrust those facilities with their lives and well being. Both hospitals and nursing homes are required by law to provide an adequate level of care. If someone is injured as a result of receiving a level of care that can be considered to be negligent then you may be entitled to be compensated with monetary damages.
Bed sores acquired in a hospital or nursing home are also called “decubitis ulcers” or “pressure sores”. These sores are caused by prolonged pressure on any area of the body that comes into continuous contact with the bed or other object and commonly develop in the parts of the body that come into constant contact with the bed such as the lower back area, the heels, elbows and shoulders. When people are elderly, injured or disabled they are unable to move and change positions making them susceptible to developing bed sores when confined to a hospital or nursing home facility. These people thus require the care of others to prevent the development of bed sores. When hospitals and nursing homes do not provide the proper level of care to either avoid the development of bed sores or to diagnose and treat them in a timely manner this may constitute malpractice.
Bed sores often can and should be prevented with proper care, which care requires sufficient and attentive staff. Once a patient is identified to be at risk for bed sores, as a result of being confined to a bed, then that patient needs to be provided with a special bed and needs to be turned and repositioned on a regular schedule. The personal injury attorneys at Jaroslawicz & Jaros have successfully handled numerous cases involving both the proper care as well as the avoidance of bed sores for many years. Since there are special rules and laws that apply to hospitals and nursing homes, specifically with regard to bed sores, it is important to speak to an attorney with experience in this area of law.
Falls in hospitals and nursing homes are also a common problem. When patients are admitted to a facility they need to be properly evaluated for what is called a “fall risk assessment”. Once a patient is evaluated then the proper level of care, monitoring and assistance needs to be provided. The lawyers at Jaroslawicz & Jaros have successfully handled many cases involving falls by patients in both hospitals and nursing homes. Patients our firm has represented who have fallen and been injured comprise many different circumstances, including; a commode which was missing the proper rubber ends on its legs and slipped from under a patient; a patient who was dropped while being lifted by a HOYA lift; a patient who was left to go the bathroom on his own despite having been evaluated as requiring assistance and slipped and fell on urine; patients who needed to use the bathroom and the nurses did not answer the call bells so they tried to go on their own and were injured when they fell; bed rails that were left in a down position when they should have been raised; patients suffering dementia or confusion who were left unattended and many other specific fact patterns.
Unfortunately, falls in hospitals and nursing homes can result in serious injuries, and in elderly and frail patients often result in a fractured hip or other serious fractures. As a result of these injuries many patients then physically and mentally deteriorate and even die. That is why the prevention of these types of injuries with proper care is so important.
With respect to nursing homes or residential health care facilities, the law is particularly strict. If a patient suffers any damages in a nursing home because of a failure to treat the patient properly, a private lawsuit may be brought to recover all damages. In an action brought to recover such documents, the patient would be entitled to keep any recovery and is not to be counted for the purpose of deciding whether a patient is eligible for additional medical assistance. The law also provides that if the plaintiff is successful, the nursing home may have to pay the plaintiff’s reasonable legal fees.
So if you or someone you know has been injured in a Hospital or Nursing Home as a result of a fall or who suffered from bed sores then you need to contact the attorneys at Jaroslawicz & Jaros who can review the medical and nursing home records with an appropriate medical expert, including nurses and doctors, and can then provide you with a legal opinion as to whether you have a case or not.
If you or a loved one is in need of legal assistance, call Jaroslawicz & Jaros at 917-842-9544, toll free at 800-269-2780, or submit an online questionnaire. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to handle your case, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there is a monetary recovery of funds. In many cases, a lawsuit must be filed before an applicable expiration date, known as a statute of limitations. Please call to ensure that you do not waive your right to possible compensation.
See the complete article “Senior Citizens in Assisted Living Facilities” written by David Jaroslawicz of Jaroslawicz & Jaros in our Articles section.
By Abraham Jaros
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