We often entrust the care of elderly people in our family in the hands of care homes and nursing homes where professionals are well-trained and practiced in taking good care of them. Such places should be of comfort to elderly people, where they can spend their remaining days in peace.
However, as traumatic as it is, elderly people often suffer physical, mental or emotional abuse in the hands of the very people who are supposed to take care of them. This can be really distressing, especially for them and their families.
If some elderly person who belongs to your family has suffered such an abuse, you can claim for a compensation for any injuries — mental or physical that the victim has suffered.
Often, asking for professional advice is ideal, since experienced solicitors have experience in dealing with these matters and will improve your chances of being successful in claiming compensation. You can make a choice from a list of law experts listed on the Solicitors Guru.
Types of abuse that are common
Often, due to the negligence of medical care, there are bedsores and infections that may develop. This may be due to unhygienic conditions and failure to turn an elderly patient from side to side as required.
There may also be sufferings due to insufficient food and water especially for patients who are bedridden and can’t find food on their own. Lack of proper food will cut off access to essential nutrients which in turn might make them vulnerable to even more infection, resulting in serious diseases or worsening conditions.
Slip and fall injuries due to others’ carelessness is also a serious concern, since such injuries affect elderly people more than they affect younger people. A spill that is not cleaned up on time is an example of such careless behavior.
Physical abuse, verbal abuse and even sexual abuse are often commonly seen.
Lack of medical care is another form of elderly abuse.
What to do before applying for a claim?
- Take your loved one’s claims seriously and try to investigate.
- Talk with the supervisors and the others in the nursing homes and try to gather and record all possible evidence.
- For example, if your loved one has bedsores, keep a picture of them.
- Don’t try to be swayed by possible manipulations from staff members who will try to cover up abuse.
You should apply for a claim as soon as possible, as time limitations vary from state to state.
Amount of compensation you can expect
The compensation you will get depends on the type of abuse, the duration of the abuse, the extent of trauma and injuries caused — both physical and psychological, and the impacts on life and ability to function as a result of the abuse. You can also file for additional financial losses incurred in dealing with the abuse. And don’t worry if you feel that you can’t afford it. In the article about no win no fee agreements practice you can find some helpful tips.
You should take the advice of a solicitor, decide whether you should file for compensation against the organization or a specific person, gather evidence and go for the claim.