As our loved ones age, they often need more assistance with daily tasks and specialized medical care. Many families place their trust and confidence in assisted living centers and nursing homes to meet those needs. However, with alarming frequency, elder care facilities put their hunger for profits above the needs and rights of their residents. In such situations, a Norfolk personal injury lawyer can be essential to ensure justice for those affected.
A huge gap often exists between Norfolk, VA, nursing home brochures and commercials and the low quality of care delivered to seniors. I’m Ed Atkinson, and I handle elder abuse and nursing home negligence cases in Norfolk, VA, and throughout Hampton Roads.
If you suspect your loved one is being abused in a Norfolk nursing home, contact my office today for a free, no-risk consultation.
Potential Causes of Nursing Home Abuse in Norfolk
Personal injury, medical malpractice, and wrongful death cases against residential care facilities typically reveal that chronic understaffing and derelictions of duty lie at the root of their problems.
Such issues can contribute to several negative outcomes, including:
- Failure to administer medication and health care: Insufficient staffing or improperly trained employees may lead to missed or incorrect medication doses, delayed treatments, and inadequate medical care, ultimately harming your loved one’s health.
- Unsafe living conditions: Overburdened staff may struggle to maintain clean and hazard-free environments, putting seniors at risk of falls, infections, and other health complications.
- Non-adherence to care plans: A lack of adequate supervision and coordination among caregivers can result in care plans not being followed, which may negatively impact your family member’s well-being and quality of life.
- Poor communication: Understaffing and high turnover rates can lead to miscommunication among staff members and between staff and residents, leading to confusion and errors in care delivery.
- Neglect of basic needs: Inadequate staffing levels may result in residents not receiving timely assistance with personal hygiene, eating, drinking, or using the bathroom, leading to a decline in their physical and emotional health.
- Lack of social interaction and stimulation: Due to limited staff resources, residents often receive inadequate social interaction, mental stimulation, or engagement in recreational activities, leading to loneliness, depression, and a decline in cognitive abilities.
- Increased vulnerability to abuse: Overworked, undertrained, or stressed staff may be more prone to engaging in abusive behaviors or neglecting to report suspected abuse by others.
As a Norfolk elder abuse lawyer, I am committed to seeking justice for the harm your loved one suffered. If you suspect your loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse, please contact me for assistance and legal guidance.
For a free legal consultation with a nursing home abuse lawyer serving Norfolk, call 757-648-8579
Types of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect in Norfolk
Senior citizens can be a vulnerable population where neglect and abuse can lead to serious and even catastrophic injuries. At other times, abuse may mean an undignified or humiliating existence for your loved one.
Norfolk nursing home abuse and neglect can manifest in various forms, including those outlined in the following table:
|Type of Abuse/Neglect||Description||Examples|
|Physical abuse||Intentional use of force against a resident, resulting in injury, pain, or impairment||Hitting, slapping, pushing, shoving, inappropriate use of drugs, confinement, or restraints|
|Emotional abuse||Occurs when people talk to or treat residents in ways that cause emotional trauma or distress||Verbal assaults, insults, humiliation, intimidation through threats or yelling, ridicule, blaming|
|Nonverbal psychological abuse||Ignoring the person, separating them from friends or activities, or scaring them||Giving residents the silent treatment, isolating them from social interactions and activities, creating a fearful environment|
|Sexual abuse||Refers to intimate contact with a resident without their consent||Physical sex acts, showing pornographic material, performing sex acts in front of them, forcing them to undress|
|Neglect||Failure to fulfill a caretaking obligation that can be intentional or unintentional||Inadequate hygiene, failure to provide proper nutrition, lack of medical care, resulting in injuries or infections|
|Fall injuries||Failing to assess residents’ fall risk or implement a plan to prevent subsequent falls||Hip fractures and other broken bones that require life-threatening surgeries or diminish quality of life|
|Medication errors||Improper administration of medications, overmedication, or under-medication||Administering the wrong medication or incorrect dosage, leading to adverse reactions or worsening of the resident’s condition|
|Abandonment||When a caregiver or staff member leaves a resident unattended or without necessary care and supervision.||Leaving a resident alone for extended periods, not attending to their needs, leaving them endangered|
|Inadequate supervision||Failing to properly monitor and supervise residents, especially those at risk of falling or wandering||Allowing a resident with dementia to wander unsupervised, resulting in the resident becoming lost or injured due to hazards in or outside of the facility|
The above table is not exhaustive, as abuse and neglect take many forms. I understand that every case is unique, and I am committed to getting justice in all types of nursing home abuse cases.
Norfolk Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Near Me 757-648-8579
Indicators of Neglect in a Norfolk Nursing Home
Elder neglect can happen when a nursing home facility fails to provide the basics, including nutrition, hydration, hygiene maintenance, room or bed cleaning, and even climate control. Possible signs of nursing home neglect may include:
- Malnutrition or dehydration: Rapid weight loss, dry skin, or sunken eyes can indicate that a resident is not receiving proper nutrition or hydration.
- Poor hygiene: Unkempt appearance, dirty or soiled clothing, untrimmed nails, or body odor can indicate inadequate personal care.
- Bedsores: Bedsores or pressure ulcers can develop on your loved one’s skin when left in one position for too long, indicating a lack of proper repositioning and care.
- Unsanitary living conditions: Dirty rooms, unclean bedding, or a lack of proper sanitation can signal neglectful living conditions.
- Unexplained injuries: Bruises, cuts, or broken bones without a reasonable explanation may suggest a lack of adequate supervision or abuse.
- Frequent infections: Repeated infections, particularly urinary tract or respiratory infections, can indicate poor hygiene or lack of infection control measures.
- Emotional distress: Unusual mood swings, depression, anxiety, or withdrawal from social activities can be signs of neglect or abuse.
- Unaddressed health issues: Ignored or untreated medical conditions, including chronic pain or illness, can indicate neglect in nursing home care.
If you notice any of these signs in your loved one, it’s essential to seek help from a Norfolk nursing home neglect attorney to investigate the situation and ensure their well-being.
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Available Damages for Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Victims in Norfolk
If you or a loved one was a victim of nursing home neglect or abuse, it’s essential to understand your rights and the types of compensation you may be eligible for. As a skilled attorney with experience in nursing home abuse cases, I can guide you through the process of seeking financial compensation for the damages you and your loved one have endured. Potential damages include:
- Medical expenses related to the abuse or neglect: These costs can cover treatment, therapy, and ongoing care due to injuries or health issues resulting from the abuse or neglect.
- Pain and suffering: This compensation addresses the physical pain and discomfort endured due to the abuse or neglect.
- Emotional distress: Victims of nursing home abuse or neglect may experience psychological trauma, which can be compensated through emotional distress damages.
- Loss of enjoyment of life: If the abuse or neglect has significantly impacted the victim’s ability to enjoy their daily activities and life, they may be eligible for compensation.
- Punitive damages: In cases where the nursing home’s actions were particularly egregious or malicious, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the facility and deter similar behavior in the future.
With a deep understanding of the physical, emotional, and financial harm that abuse and neglect can inflict on nursing home residents and their families, I am committed to standing up for the rights of those suffering from nursing home staff misconduct in Norfolk.
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Time Limit for Filing a Personal Injury Claim in Virginia
When filing a nursing home abuse claim in Virginia, be aware of any relevant deadlines. According to Virginia law, the statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits is generally two years from the incident date. However, there may be exceptions depending on the circumstances of your case.
It’s also important to note that failure to file a claim within the statute of limitations could result in the dismissal of your case. If you’re unsure about the time limit for filing a claim in Virginia, it’s best to seek the advice of a knowledgeable nursing home abuse attorney who can help guide you through the legal process.
What Sets Atkinson Law Apart from Other Law Firms?
I started my law firm nearly a decade ago because I knew I could provide more responsive and personalized legal care than other Norfolk firms.
Some “big box” nursing home abuse law firms will pass you off to a different employee whenever you call. Not at Atkinson Law. When you call my number, you can expect to speak with me personally.
Then, throughout the legal process, I will be available to answer your questions and provide updates as often as you’d like.
I work hard to earn your trust at every step. This commitment to client satisfaction sets my law firm apart from others in the Norfolk area. There’s a reason why I consistently receive five-star reviews on Google.
Contact Me, Your Norfolk Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer
Senior citizens and disabled people are entitled to a dignified life. Therefore, when a family member is placed in a care facility, we expect them to receive a standard of care conducive to their well-being and dignity.
As a Norfolk nursing home abuse lawyer, I am committed to fighting for the rights of vulnerable seniors and disabled individuals who have suffered abuse or neglect at the hands of nursing home or assisted living caregivers.
If you suspect that your loved one was the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, I encourage you to reach out for a free consultation. I will listen to your concerns, provide legal guidance, and work tirelessly to hold the at-fault party responsible for any harm they inflicted. Contact Atkinson Law today to schedule a free case review.