Who Will Take Care of You When You Become Unable to Care For Yourself?... Your Family or A Medicare Nursing Home?...

Submitted by SadInAmerica on Mon, 09/08/2014 - 4:28pm.

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In the middle of the night, at its loneliest hour no one really knows what happens to the hundreds of thousands of people who live in nursing homes. People who must depend upon others for all of their needs like helping them get to the bathroom or move from an uncomfortable position or even simply eat.
~ Gloria Christie - MUST See Videos

A grandmother huddled in her bed, terrified when a nurse came to check on her. The elderly woman was a pioneer among female executives, and was well aware that she had to be an advocate for her own health care. The grandmother rang her buzzer calling for a nurse more frequently than most.

That night was different, her buzzer was oddly silent...

"Why haven't you buzzed me yet?" the nurse asked.

"Please don't hit me," the old woman said.

"Did someone hit you?" asked the nurse. She knew the answer, but the old woman was afraid to tell. After all the one who hit her would be back.

In the video below, a Medicare five-star nursing home fails patients miserably. The children of this elderly woman had no idea there were over 150 complaints against this nursing home!

What about this elderly man?... "He's not doing very well," the male nurse said as he did a hand-off before ending his shift. The nurse just coming in to work went to check on the old guy. Indeed he was not doing well... Rigor mortis had already set in, meaning the elderly resident had been dead for hours!

Why would this happen? The first nurse just didn't want to do the mountain of paperwork required when a patient dies... especially when nurses are already burdened beyond belief.

Barbara Christie Mansfield worked in Topeka, Kan. nursing homes for thirteen years on the 11:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. shift. She loved working with the patients with Alzheimer's disease and had a special knack in caring for them.

Mansfield cared for 60 patients with advanced Alzheimer's disease, severe diabetes and other serious conditions. Oh, she had two nurse's aides to assist her... when she could locate where one of them was sleeping.

It was an impossible situation. Out-of-state owners cut back the number of nurses in order to improve their 'bottom line'. They know nursing home inspectors do not come during the darkest hours of the night.

One would think surprise visits at any time would be a good idea, but no, inspectors schedule their visits to give the nursing homes time to get their act together — doing just enough to pass inspection.

This nursing home knew they could blame tell-tale bruises on falls or the reality that old people bruise more easily than the young. They also knew they could hide giving patients baths just once a month, and no one would check on them in the middle of the night.

Beloved people frequently come to nursing homes to die. When five-star federally rated nursing homes neglect those who cannot defend themselves, what are the lower rated nursing home like?... Source

Video and photo courtesy of the New York Times.

 

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Know the Warning Signs of
Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

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Nearly two million Americans live in long-term care facilities, and abuse and neglect against the elderly are national concerns. Federal nursing home regulations state that...

"the resident has the right to be free from verbal, sexual, physical, and mental abuse, corporal punishment, and involuntary seclusion." 

These regulations define nursing home abuse and neglect as...

  • Abuse: an intentional infliction of injury, unreasonable confinement, intimidation, care/service deprivation or punishment that results in physical harm, pain or mental anguish

  • Neglect: a failure, intentional or not, to provide a person with the care and services necessary to ensure freedom from harm or pain; a failure to react to a potentially dangerous situation resulting in resident harm or anxiety

 

Types of Abuse and Neglect

  • Assault and battery (including kicking, slapping, pinching, pushing, shaking, beating, threats and verbal or emotional abuse)

  • Lack of care for existing medical problems

  • Prolonged or continual deprivation of food or water

  • Rape or other forms of sexual assault or battery

  • Unreasonable physical restraint or seclusion

  • Use of a physical or chemical restraint or psychotropic medication for any purpose not consistent with that authorized by a physician

 

Common Signs of Physical or Verbal Abuse and Neglect

  • Bed injuries/asphyxiation

  • Dehydration

  • Emotionally upset or agitated, exremely withdrawn and non-communicative

  • Falls, fractures or head injuries

  • Infections

  • Instances of wandering/elopement

  • Malnutrition

  • Pressure ulcers (bed sores)

  • Rapid weight loss or weight gain; signs of malnutrition

  • Reluctance to speak in staff members' presence

  • Unexplained or unexpected death of the resident

  • Unexplained injuries such as wounds, cuts, bruises or welts in various stages of healing

  • Unsanitary and unclean conditions

  • Unusual or sudden changes in behavior (fear of being touched, sucking, biting, rocking)

  • Wanting to be isolated from others

 

Other Warning Signs of Physical or Verbal Abuse and Neglect

  • Injuries requiring emergency treatment or hospitalization

  • Any incident involving broken bones, especially a fractured hip

  • Any injury or death occurring during or shortly after an episode of wandering (including outside the facility)

  • Heavy medication or sedation

  • One resident injures another resident

  • Resident is frequently ill, and the illnesses are not promptly reported to the physician and family

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Animals At A Shelter Are Treated
More HumanelyThan Our Elderly Population!

 

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Warning!... Adult Content

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What to Do if You Suspect Elder Abuse

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If you suspect that an elderly person has been abused or neglected by their nursing home, you should take action. Here's what to do...

1. Verify the elderly person's story. Your first step should be to see if the elderly person is telling the truth. Get clear about what your relative or friend is saying by going over the problem with them. If you can, check with other residents of the nursing home who seem to be coherent. Also gather medical records, or take photos, of recent injuries or prescriptions.

2. Consider removing the elderly person to another facility. If you are worried about the safety of a nursing home resident, assist them in leaving the nursing home immediately.

3. Inform the authorities. Inform the police or district attorney. In some states, such as California, you are required to report elder abuse when you learn it has occurred. If the district attorney determines that the evidence that you present rises to the level of criminal behavior, the state will file charges against the nursing home.

4. File a complaint with the appropriate agencies. File a complaint about the nursing home to your state's department of social services, adult protective services, or elder protective services.

5. Consider hiring an attorney. You should retain a civil attorney who specializes in one or more of the following areas: nursing home law, elder abuse, personal injury, or consumer fraud. In certain situations, it is possible to join with other persons who have suffered damages as a part of a class action lawsuit.

 

Legal Claims in Nursing Home Abuse Cases

Seniors and their relatives may bring several types of claims against nursing homes, including actions alleging physical, sexual, or verbal abuse, false imprisonment, consumer fraud resulting in financial abuse, and financial exploitation.

In order for abuse to qualify as elder abuse, the victim must be older than a certain age. This age varies between states and usually ranges from 60 to 65.

Plaintiffs can also institute a lawsuit for neglect. Industry standards require nursing homes to provide reasonable care to its residents. If the nursing home fails to provide reasonable care or fails to adhere to a specific industry standard and that failure causes injury to the nursing home resident, you may have an action for neglect.

In general, nursing homes are held to a high standard of care. The federal Nursing Home Reform Act (NHRA) of 1987 requires that all nursing homes who receive Medicare or Medicaid funds maintain facilities that are safe for their residents.

In addition, federal regulations also require that all nursing home residents, whether they receive Medicaid or not, have a right to be free from verbal, mental, physical, and sexual abuse.

To learn more about the rules stated in the NHRA, read Residents' Rights: An Overview on the National Citizen's Coalition for Nursing Home Reform's website at www.nccnhr.org (search for "Fact Sheets").

States and municipalities, counties, or provinces, often impose additional regulations on nursing homes as well.

If a nursing home fails to abide by a specific state or federal regulation, and that failure results in abuse or neglect, you may have grounds to sue the nursing home.

If the nursing home does not comply with regulations, but no neglect or abuse results, then the Attorney General is the only one that can bring an action.

 

Getting Help

Lawsuits against nursing homes can be complex. Many nursing homes are run by corporations that avoid lawsuits by burying the opposing party in paperwork. If you decide to sue a nursing home, consider hiring an attorney.

For help in choosing the right lawyer for your case, read Nolo's article Finding a Personal Injury Lawyer. Or you can go to Nolo's Lawyer Directory to get a list of attorneys in your geographical area.

To learn more about making the best arrangements for long-term care, read Long-Term Care: How to Plan & Pay for It, by Joseph Matthews (Nolo).

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Reposted September 8, 2014 - KnowTheLies.com

 

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Submitted by SadInAmerica on Mon, 09/08/2014 - 4:28pm.