Assisted Living Centers May Subject Residents to Abuse – Talk to a Cook County Assisted Living Abuse Lawyer
Families with an aging parent or grandparent must consider where they place that loved one when he or she no longer can live an independent life. Assisted living centers (ALCs) have become a preferred bridge for many between independent living and nursing homes.
If they choose an ALC because the elder relative is generally in better health, families then must place their trust in healthcare professionals such as doctors, nurses and the facility management team. That’s because an ALC usually provides more independence than a nursing home, but the elderly still rely on caregivers at the ALC for a lot of their daily needs. This places them at the mercy or others and by association, at risk of injury, neglect and even abuse. If that happens, there is legal recourse – a Cook County assisted living abuse lawyer can advise families and their loved ones of their options.
Neglect can happen in a variety of ways, such as:
- Failure to monitor your loved one’s special diets closely
- Not keeping up with changes in their emotional and physical state
- Not diligently monitoring your loved one’s whereabouts
- Failing to advise the proper doctor of an important change in your loved one’s health
- Other negligent behavior
These transgressions can lead to common problems with ALC residents, including
- Malnutrition and dehydration
- Administering the wrong medication
- Scalding burns
- Bed sores
- Wandering away from the facility
- Physical and/or sexual abuse
- Financial abuse or theft of personal property
As mentioned, ALCs are usually long-term but temporary solutions. Eventually, many residents are kept at the facility when they belong in a nursing facility. When an elderly (or mentally afflicted) resident’s condition deteriorates, the ALC may be lax in reporting it to a health care provider or may fail to suggest to you that he or she be moved to another place, such as a hospital or nursing home, to receive appropriate care. Family members who visit their relatives often and carefully observe them should be able to decide sooner than those at the ALC.
Was Your Family Member Abused or Neglected at an ALC?
If there is a problem, the first thing is to determine if your loved one was abused or neglected. It makes an important difference in how any violation is pursued and how a Cook County assisted living abuse lawyer might approach your case. Abuse is legally viewed as someone willfully committing an act that causes harm and a lack of care for the victim’s welfare. In such events, criminal laws may have been broken. But neglect constitutes inattentiveness to your aging relative’s welfare. There are several ways to identify your family member’s situation.
- Was your loved one in the right type of care facility relative to his or her condition? Sometimes families make the wrong decision on where to place them. Has he or she been there for several years and finally reached the point at which his or her condition degenerates? A nursing home might be the next step.
- Was your loved one properly supervised?
- Might the ALC be understaffed or did not appreciate your loved one’s condition?
- Did your loved one suffer an injury by another, improperly supervised, resident or a staff member who was lax in performing his or her duties?
No one deserves to be treated poorly – or suffer needless injury – while in the care of an assisted living facility’s staff. When this happens, you and your family member may be able to receive compensation. Damages could include past, present and future medical costs, along with pain and suffering, and other possible damages depending on the circumstances surrounding your case. Various survivor-related damages may be available if wrongful death occurred as a result of assisted living abuse or negligence.
If you or a family member has been abused, neglected or injured as a resident of an ALC, have the situation evaluated as soon as possible. To schedule a free consultation with one of Buttafuoco and Associates’ experienced Cook County assisted living abuse lawyers, call 1-800-NOW-HURT or use our online contact form.