Our parents and grandparents have spent their entire lives making sure that we had everything we needed to thrive and we expect that they will be treated with dignity and respect worthy of all the sacrifices they’ve made. It is a travesty that the number of nursing home abuse reports is on the rise in Illinois and it is important that we fight back to ensure that negligent nursing homes are unable to afford cutting corners and neglecting those whom they are tasked with caring for.
The Illinois nursing home abuse attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC aggressively defend the rights of those who’ve been neglected or abused by those trusted to take care of them. All of our nursing home cases are handled on a contingency fee basis-- meaning there is never a legal fee charged unless there is a recovery for you.
The Burgeoning Cost of Nursing Care
Skilled nursing care is far from cheap and while the average cost of caring for the elderly in Illinois is lower than the average across the nation, it is still exorbitant. Patients sharing rooms are charged an average of nearly $5,400 each month while electing for more privacy will cost an additional $800. This amounts to over $64,000 per year and is a significant drain on the finances of our elderly and their families, even when accounting for contributions from Medicare and Medicare toward these costs.
The reason we place our loved ones in nursing facilities despite these costs is because we recognize the need for them to be surrounded by those who are trained to provide for their unique needs. It is well within our rights to expect that nursing facilities provide high quality care in return for our hard earned money and it can be infuriating to learn that a loved one suffered an injury because the home cut corners and placed profit above the health of the patient.
How For-Profit Companies are changing the Landscape
It was not until very recently that for-profit businesses began to wade into the nursing care field and most facilities up to that point were run by non-profit organizations tied to religious institutions. As for-profit homes have started to spring up over the state, so have the number of reports concerning abuse and neglect.
The primary conflict is in the need to maximize profit— most corporations do whatever it takes to reduce costs and find ways to bring in additional revenue. When our loved ones’ health is at stake, however, it is inexcusable to understaff a facility in order to increase margins at their expense.
Forms of Nursing Neglect
Nursing home negligence comes in a variety of forms and while some cases involve irreprehensible behavior, the majority of neglect is not intentional. Following are the most common forms of nursing home abuse and the injuries that can result.
- Failure to provide adequate nutrition and hydration. When nursing facilities are severely short-staffed, patients may not receive three meals per day and could go for extended periods without fluids.
- Inadequate measures to prevent or treat bedsores. This form of neglect is also commonly associated with under-staffing due to the ease in which pressure ulcers can be prevented. Patients who are at an elevated risk of developing bed sores merely need to be moved every one to two hours and staff should be wary of any signs that sores are beginning to develop.
- Improper supervision of high risk patients. Some patients require special needs or have limitations and it is the duty of nursing staff to come up with treatment plans for individual patients which address their needs. If a patient requires assistance or supervision for tasks such as eating, moving in and out of bed, walking, or other tasks, it is important that staff members are available to assist. Those at elevated risk of falling may suffer injuries due to a fall and those requiring mealtime supervision that are ignored may have difficulty swallowing and choke on their food.
- Physical, emotional or sexual abuse. The most heinous offenses are actions taken willfully by staff members or visitors who are somehow allowed contact with victims. There is simply no excuse for these types of injuries and it is important to constantly be wary of signs that our loved ones are being harmed in a physical, emotional or sexual manner. Signs include sudden changes in behavior with emotional outbursts, strange behavior around caregivers, bruises and physical marks and direct accusations of abuse.
How We Can Help Your Loved One
The discovery that your loved one may be the victim of abuse can be alarming and you will want to remove him or her from the harmful environment immediately. Our Illinois nursing home abuse attorneys are equipped to help you identify the existence of abuse and help you relocate your loved one into a home that will better suit his or her needs— and one that is accredited to provide quality care. Additionally, we can gather all of the evidence needed to build a case on your behalf so that those responsible for your loved one’s injuries will be liable for the cost of treating those wounds.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC has successfully helped hundreds of clients who have been neglected and abused in nursing homes. Contact us today to arrange a free consultation with one of our Illinois nursing home abuse lawyers to learn more about your legal options. Once we have reviewed your case, we will guide you through your first steps and get to work representing the interests of your loved one.
We will only ask for payment once we have won or settled your case and should we fail to collect compensation on your loved one’s behalf, our services will not cost you a thing.