Why Do Caregivers Neglect Patients in Nursing Homes?

Posted: March 25th, 2015

patients in nursing homes, Illinois nursing home abuse attorneysOne of the most sinister and disturbing trends in nursing homes is neglect. What this involves clearly demonstrates a complete disregard for a patient’s well-being and rights. Negligence can take many different forms, and each is extremely hurtful and malicious. However, neglect and abuse in nursing homes cannot be ignored.

In 2000, a study interviewing 2,000 nursing home residents reported how 44 percent had been abused. Ninety-five percent said they had been neglected or had seen another resident neglected. Every year, patients are essentially forgotten in nursing homes around the country, and throughout the decades ahead, the baby boomer generation will soon be nursing home residents—in the millions.

Neglect—in More Ways Than One

Families may not immediately notice certain symptoms of neglect, but others signs are hard to ignore.

Emotional neglect: This type of neglect is typically sustained mistreatment that may cause a slow introversion in a patient’s demeanor. Family members should be on the lookout for signs of withdrawal. Psychological and behavioral signs may begin to manifest as feelings of shame, anxiety, uncertainty, helplessness, trembling and vagueness.

Basic human needs: Food, medication, and movement are very basic resident-patient needs. When these needs are overlooked or withheld, patients may suffer from—and even die from—dehydration and starvation.

Personal hygiene: Patients that are bedridden due to illness or surgery are prone to bedsores. These skin lesions can occur when caregivers fail to frequently turn and reposition a patient or keep a resident hydrated and on a healthy diet. Infections are also a common occurrence if patients are not bathed on a regular basis.

Falls: According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each year, a typical nursing home with 100 beds reports 100 to 200 falls. Many falls, however, go unreported. Additionally, around 16 to 27 percent of nursing home falls are a result of preventable hazards.

Reasons for the Neglect

Often, there is not any one overriding factor that contributes to neglect in nursing homes. Perhaps it is a case of understaffing in profit-driven homes, or the neglect of vulnerable, disabled patients who are not valued or respected. Maybe a particular caregiver has his or her own personal stressors or personal crisis. Cultural divisions and opposing belief systems could also lead to a level of intolerance. Whatever the basis, it is completely unfounded and resident-patient rights must be protected.

Prevention

In a joint effort, families and communities can help stamp out and prevent the prevalence of nursing home neglect. Suggested tips to consider include:

  • Vetting prospective nursing homes;
  • Knowing how to detect signs of neglect and abuse and knowing where to report suspicions;
  • Being aware of agencies and organizations that provide resources (protective services/Ombudsman); and
  • Seeking legal advice.

Care and Compassion from Your Legal Team

Urging a loved one to freely communicate with you is a good starting point in helping prevent nursing home neglect. However, if you discover a case of neglect, time is of the essence. Knowing a loved one’s personal safety is compromised is motivation enough to contact a personal injury attorney.

Based in Lake County, Illinois, Noonan Perillo Ltd. has a large practice area dedicated to nursing home neglect. This is a very sensitive subject and legal remedies may be available to you. Please contact our compassionate Illinois nursing home abuse attorneys today to schedule your free initial consultation.

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Motorcycle Collisions: Not Always the Rider’s Fault

Posted: March 18th, 2015

motorcycle collisions, Illinois personal injury attorneysSpring is looming and so is the desire to emerge from an intense winter. Those who enjoy riding the streets and highways on a motorcycle will be sharing the roads in even greater numbers soon enough. The Unites States Department of Transportation reported that In 2012, 4,957 motorcyclists were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes—an increase of 7 percent from the 4,630 motorcyclists killed in 2011.

Unfortunately, riders face treacherous scenarios every day and are constantly up against the misconception that they are always taking chances on the roads. This usually implies dangerous passing/overtaking, speeding, and even riding while intoxicated. Yet, what is often the case, is that riders are struck by vehicles whose drivers are either inattentive or driving recklessly. This ‘blindness’ car drivers have of motorcyclists occurs all too often. Academic studies have previously found that riders were NOT at fault 66 percent of the time and that, in fact, drivers in vehicles are failing to detect and recognize motorcyclists sharing the road with them.

Because of the frequency of these types of accidents, they should be handled by an experienced personal injury law firm that has a practice area dedicated to motorcycle collisions.

Accident Types

Riders can be injured by another party and bear the brunt of force in several ways such as:

  • Being side-swiped after a vehicle makes a left turn into rider’s path/ failing to yield to a motorcycle;
  • Being rear-ended;
  • Road users changing lanes and emerging from intersections;
  • Road surface issues; and
  • Possible defective motorcycle parts.

If you consider the absence of airbags and surrounding support structures that would be present in a cars, motorcyclists are extremely vulnerable on the road. Hence, their injuries are likely to be much more severe and often times fatal.

Even the use of safety helmets (recommended, but not yet required by law in Illinois as in many other States) may not be sufficient in preventing injury. Riders can fall victim to very serious injuries and may include traumatic brain injury, spinal trauma, broken bones and paralysis.

Compassionate Attorneys

An experienced personal injury attorney will have the resources to conduct a thorough investigation and identify the responsible party (or parties). Driver intolerance and ignorance is unacceptable. Drivers, who fail to see and acknowledge motorcyclists, contribute to collisions over and over again. Motorcycle collisions usually end with fatal consequences for the rider, and life-long grief for family members.

To become knowledgeable about your rights and whether a viable case can be pursued, Noonan Perillo Ltd. has tools, such as accident reconstructionists, life-care planners, and economists to ensure that your recovery includes the long-term costs of a catastrophic injury. Call our compassionate Illinois personal injury attorneys today to schedule a free initial consultation in our Waukegan office. We are here to help.

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Nursing Home Negligence and Abuse: How Should Victims Respond?

Posted: March 11th, 2015

negligence and abuse, nursing home negligence, Illinois nursing home neglect lawyerThroughout one’s life, there may come a time when an individual is no longer able to live independently and care for him or herself. Hence, the decision may be made to enter into a nursing home facility.

Nursing homes have a responsibility to create a safe environment and provide their patients with reliable care. When they abandon those responsibilities, patients can become uncomfortable, ill, or even die as a result of neglect. If you or a family member has been the victim of nursing home negligence, you are not alone.

Fortunately, there are laws that protect the rights of these victims. They may be able to recover compensation by filing a lawsuit against the facility. However, these cases are notoriously difficult to win because the nursing home is unlikely to cooperate. This is why the support of an experienced attorney can prove invaluable if you decide to take legal action.

Taking Legal Action against Negligent Nursing Homes

Most of these cases begin when a member of the patient’s family notices signs of abuse. These include unexplained bruises, arguments between the patient and the caregiver, and changes in the patient’s personality.

According to the Illinois Department on Aging, the first step to take after uncovering abuse is filing a report with law enforcement. This can help prevent other families from suffering similar treatment.

Often, nursing home abuse is not the result of a caregiver’s inappropriate actions. These facilities may be understaffed or under equipped. Still, it may be possible for victims to file a successful lawsuit against the facility. Each case is unique, and your lawyer can explain your rights and determine if you have a legitimate claim.

Nursing Home Negligence Lawyers in Lake County, Illinois

If you suspect that your elderly loved one may be the victim of nursing home negligence and abuse, call an experienced Lake County nursing home neglect lawyer from Noonan Perillo Ltd. You can reach our office by calling 847-244-0111. Your first consultation is free.

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