When someone places their loved one in a nursing home, they expect that the employees at the facility will put the health and safety of their loved one first. However, this is not always the case. Nursing home employees are often over-worked and end up working long hours without breaks. Nurses are human, and sometimes they snap, lashing out in an abusive manner at the very residents they are supposed to be caring for.
To make matters worse, when this abuse does happen, the nursing home administration often acts to cover up any evidence of the alleged neglect or abuse in hopes of keeping the incident under the radar. Administration tries to cover up the evidence because if the authorities do find out, the home can be fined thousands of dollars. Additionally, if the loved ones of the resident affected by the abuse or neglect find out, they can file a civil suit for monetary damages against the nursing home employees and administration, potentially resulting in a substantial payout by the nursing home.
Proving a case against a nursing home employee or administration can be difficult enough, even without the home’s administration hiding or destroying evidence. This is because discovering competent and admissible evidence of abuse or neglect is often difficult. For example, residents often have few people to go to when reporting the abuse, and their claims may not always fall on listening ears. However, the reality is that nursing home abuse and neglect are very real problems.
Nursing Home Officials Plead Guilty to Covering Up Abuse
Earlier this month in New York, several nursing home administrators pled guilty to several criminal charges related to falsified business records and suppressed incidents of abuse and neglect. According to one news source, the investigation began when authorities got word that the nursing home covered up a medication error for several days. There were also reports that an elderly patient with dementia sexually assaulted another patient.
Several of the officials ended up admitting their involvement in the cover-up. One official admitted to concealing the medical records of a patient who failed to receive the necessary prescription medication. Another official pled guilty to eavesdropping on an interview between another official and the investigative team. In all, three nursing home officials were involved in the cover-up and subsequent prosecution. All defendants involved avoided jail time.
Has Your Loved One Been Harmed in a Maryland Nursing Home?
If you have a loved one in a Maryland nursing home, and you believe that your loved one may have been mistreated by nursing home staff, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. However, as noted above, nursing home officials will often do whatever they can to avoid liability, including using tactics that are not legally permitted. To make sure that you are treated fairly throughout the trial process, contact one of the skilled advocates at the Maryland personal injury law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC at 410-654-3600. Calling is free, and there is no obligation.
More Blog Posts:
Understaffing: The Number One Cause of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published December 15, 2015.
Nursing Home Abuse Doesn’t Require Physical Contact, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published January 8, 2016.