Substance abuse disorders have become a national epidemic. The National Survey on Drug Use and Health estimates that 20.7 million people needed substance abuse treatment in 2017.
- Defining Drug Rehabilitation Center Abuse
- Why Does Drug Treatment Center Sex Abuse Occur?
- Examples of Drug Rehabilitation Center Abuse
- Signs of Drug Rehab Patient Abuse
- Why Choose Us to Prosecute a Case Against an Alcohol or Drug Rehabilitation Center?
- Drug Rehabilitation Facility Sex Abuse FAQs
- Contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers Today
A drug detoxification or rehabilitation program could be critical for someone with a drug dependency. Unfortunately, abuse and mistreatment of patients inside drug rehab centers are destroying patients’ chances for recovery.
If you or someone you love has suffered sexual abuse at an inpatient drug or alcohol rehab center, contact the personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC for a free consultation.
Our drug rehab center sex abuse attorneys can help you hold a negligent or criminal treatment center accountable for your injuries. You, or a loved one, could be eligible for compensation through a civil claim against the rehab facility. Call our firm today at (888) 424-5757.
Defining Drug Rehabilitation Center Abuse
Rehab center abuse is any action or omission that takes advantage of patients trying to obtain sobriety. Abuse in drug treatment facilities can take many forms.
Patients might suffer physical violence, neglect, or mistreatment at the hands of negligent staff members. They might also suffer emotional abuse in the form of belittling, humiliation, isolation, or inappropriate use of restraints.
Some rehab center abuse aims to give the perpetrator financial gain. Financial exploitation of rehabilitation facility patients can involve health insurance fraud, breach of contract, or outright scams.
Treatment centers might falsely advertise their services to patients, and engage in health insurance or drug fraud schemes that can harm patients. They might also steal and sell a patient’s private information.
Why Does Drug Treatment Center Sex Abuse Occur?
The federal government has no official definition of what constitutes a drug treatment or rehabilitation facility. Licensing requirements can vary by state.
Unlike doctor’s offices or other medical facilities, drug rehabilitation facilities are specific businesses in the eyes of the law. They do not have to conform to the standards imposed on the medical industry.
Any entrepreneur— with or without medical education or experience— can open a narcotic rehabilitation center. With the ongoing opioid epidemic and the national narcotic addiction crisis, a proliferation of drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers has cropped up around the nation.
Hundreds of entrepreneurs have taken the opportunity to capitalize on the current demand for treatment and open facilities of their own. The government only loosely regulates these facilities. The lack of official guidelines, rules, or safety standards leaves room for significant problems.
Drug rehabilitation facilities face no scrutiny or supervision from regulators, nor do they have to comply with other medical facilities’ same health and safety standards. The government rarely inspects these centers and more or less leaves operators to their own devices.
Unfortunately, this industry’s lack of oversight has opened the door to patient abuse, neglect, and exploitation.
Examples of Drug Rehabilitation Center Abuse
Drug treatment center abuse can range from physical to financial. Any mistreatment of a facility patient that causes the patient harm can constitute abuse.
Physical abuse can include intimidation, causing bruises or other injuries, or acts of sexual abuse such as inappropriate physical contact. Financial abuse could cause the patient to lose thousands of dollars to the facility or one of its employees.
Examples of rehabilitation center abuse include:
- Physical violence
- Sex crimes
- Emotional abuse
- Neglect or mistreatment
- Lapses in patient care
- Failure to give medication
- Withholding food from patients
- Keeping the patient confined
- Financial exploitation
The lack of governmental authority over narcotic treatment centers does not give them the right to mistreat or abuse patients. Injured victims have the right to pursue the facilities’ abusive staff and operators in the civil courts. Filing a civil claim could be an avenue for justice, closure, and financial recovery for innocent and unsuspecting people trying to obtain sobriety.
Signs of Drug Rehab Patient Abuse
Speak out if your loved one is currently residing in a drug rehabilitation facility or staying at an inpatient center, and you notice possible signs of abuse. Reporting signs of abuse or sexual assault or saving lives. It could also hold the center responsible for its negligence, misconduct, or fraud.
Learning how to notice the red flags of rehabilitation facility abuse is the first step toward obtaining justice.
Signs might include the following:
- Unusual or unexplained injuries. If a rehab patient suffers broken bones, bruising, lacerations, burns, strap marks, or other unusual injuries during their stay, physical abuse might be the cause. Look for frequent “accidents” or injuries that do not align with the center’s excuse.
- Malnourishment. Undergoing drug detoxification can cause some physical changes in a patient, but after an initial detox period, the patient should start to recover. If the patient finished detox and still appears too thin, sickly, malnourished, or dehydrated, the center might not provide proper food, drink, or medications.
- Medical malpractice. Doctors and other medical care providers might not accurately diagnose the patient’s mental health or substance use disorders and recommend the wrong treatment program that harms them instead of helping the inpatient or outpatient. Some wrongful death incidents could have been prevented had the medical team followed the established protocols and not made a mistake.
- Behavioral changes. If they allow you to visit or speak to your loved one during inpatient rehab, watch for signs of something amiss. Your loved one should be receiving therapies, classes, and recovery exercises to improve the mind, body, and spirit In a safe environment. If your loved one instead appears to be distant, depressed, anxious, or suicidal, he or she might be the victim of facility abuse.
- Abrupt changes in financial situation. Rehabilitation facilities and nursing homes are not free, but the center should be open and honest about their disclaimer fees on how much things will cost. It should provide invoices and breakdowns of all charges. Keep tabs on your or your loved one’s bank account while in the care facility. Alert the authorities of any unauthorized or unusual charges to the account.
Abuse, neglect, and fraud are perpetrated against those in a weakened position to defend themselves, including children, the elderly, and people struggling to overcome drug abuse.
Being able to spot the signs that something is wrong could prevent further harm to the victim. As soon as you notice signs of abuse, remove yourself or your loved one from the facility and contact an attorney.
Why Choose Us to Prosecute a Case Against an Alcohol or Drug Rehabilitation Center?
Choosing your personal injury attorney is the first step toward achieving a positive outcome. The lawyer you choose should have the experience, compassion, and resources to optimize your claim’s strength.
Look for legal counsel with a proven history of success and specific experience in narcotic rehab center abuse law. Clients choose Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers to represent them for many reasons, including:
- We will invest the necessary resources to increase your chances of success and financial recovery in your case.
- We never work for corporations, insurance companies, physicians, or drug treatment centers. We only work for you, the victim.
- We have won record-setting recoveries for past clients. We maximize payouts for clients with contingency-fee cost arrangements.
- We have a network of trusted attorneys across the United States to refer you if we cannot help you.
Our lawyers care what happens to you. We are passionate about protecting the rights of people in substance abuse treatment. Our firm understands the nature of drug and alcohol addiction and the challenges you face each day.
We know the personal and financial losses the abuse might have cost you. We want to help you fight for justice and financial compensation. Initial consultations are always free and completely confidential.
Drug Rehabilitation Facility Sex Abuse FAQs
Below are some frequently asked questions raised by people sexually abused in a drug or alcohol rehabilitation facility. We appreciate your feeling of uncertainty and perhaps fear. Consequently, we invite you to contact our sex abuse attorneys for a free consultation regarding your legal rights and options for pursuing a civil claim.
How Can I Tell Who Is a Sex Offender?
Potential sex offenders are not easily identifiable. Many sexually assaulted victims begin distrusting men to protect themselves from sexual assault predators.
However, only a small number of men are sex offenders. To stay protected, follow safety guidelines, including remaining aware of your surroundings, going with your gut instinct, and avoiding self-shame, fear, or blame.
Who Can I Speak to If I Am Sexually Assaulted?
If you were sexually assaulted, it is essential to report what happened to the local law enforcement authorities right away. Also, speak with a trusted friend that can provide support during a difficult time.
Reach out to crisis centers in the area that usually provides information, referral, support, and advocacy twenty-four hours a day.
How Can I Help a Friend Who Was Sexually Assaulted?
Open the lines of communication with your sexually assaulted loved one, and avoid judging their decisions. Instead, provide a reinforcing message not to blame themselves for what occurred.
Help your friend seek help during the recovery process and be sensitive to any new behavior or fears they might need to overcome, like feeling unsafe or avoiding crowds. Recognize that it takes time to heal, but that you will be there to listen to what they need to say whenever they want to talk.
Can I Be Legally Forced into a Drug Rehab Center?
While each state has unique laws on admitting family members into rehabilitation centers, no one can be legally forced to go. Family intervention might provide an avenue for the person with an addiction. However, they often change their mind quickly as the day approaches.
Recognize that drug addiction is making you sick, but getting help from the rehabilitation center could substantially improve your life.
Is Drug Addiction a Form of Elder Abuse?
More older adults than ever before abuse drugs and alcohol due to changes in their later life, including retirement, loneliness, family conflict, sleeping problems, financial concerns, or losing loved ones.
Some seniors become addicted to their prescription medications over time to feel better. Some doctors failed to identify addicted behavior and continued to supply “feel-good” medications to their elderly patients who might be mixing the drugs with alcohol consumption.
Do All Sexual Abuse Rehabilitation Cases Involve Strangers?
Most sexually violent incidents happen between individuals who know each other, leading to embarrassment, confusion, broken trust, guilt, hurt, and misunderstandings.
Many patients share the same addiction issues with underlying causes in drug rehab centers, including financial problems, parental/spousal mistreatment, emotional abuse, domestic violence, or genetic predisposition.
Many rehabilitation center abuse victims are pressured, manipulated, or overpowered when saying no to unwanted sexual contact. Non-consensual sexual activity is a crime that should be reported to local law enforcement and the drug rehab facility.
Contact Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers Today
Drug rehab center abuse can do more than derail a patient’s recovery—it can cause a host of new problems that might plague the victim. Treatment center abuse can cause relapse, overdose, and patient fatalities and involve significant physical, financial, and emotional suffering for all affected.
Were you or a family member harmed by an abuser at a drug and alcohol abuse center while receiving residential treatment? If so, contact our law firm today at (888) 424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or through the contact form to schedule a free consultation.
All discussions with our law firm remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship. Our attorneys follow social distancing guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus).
Resources for victims of drug center sexual misconduct:
- Trends & Statistics
- 2017 NSDUH Annual National Report
- Starting a Drug & Alcohol Rehabilitation Center – A Complete Guide
- Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment: A Research-Based Guide (Third Edition)
- Health Care Fraud