Over the past several years, there has been a significant increase in the number of reported instances of Maryland nursing home abuse and neglect. In part, this is due to increased awareness of the problem, as social media has allowed for news of these disturbing events to disseminate more easily. However, experts still believe that the majority of nursing home abuse and neglect goes unreported.
Experts believe that there are several causes of nursing home abuse and neglect. Not surprisingly, most of the causes relate to the environment created by nursing home management rather than specific issues with individual nurses or employees. However, some nurses are better suited for the job. Often, this is due to the level of training or experience the nurse has obtained.
Studies have shown that low staffing levels are correlated with increased instances of abuse and neglect. Thus, it is generally agreed that the more stressful the work environment, the more likely employees are to “snap.” According to a recent article, Maryland and Virginia nurses are offered some of the lowest rates to provide in-home care to residents. Apparently, in-home nurses in Virginia and Maryland make only $20 to $35 per hour. This is about 30% lower than nearby states. As a result, qualified nurses are leaving Maryland and Virginia to pursue employment in states where they can earn a better living. Thus, residents are having a difficult time securing in-home nurses, especially during off-peak hours and on weekends.
While the article discusses in-home nursing wage rates in Maryland and Virginia, a low in-home rate still affects the quality of care in Maryland and Virginia nursing homes. For example, the fact that the states’ in-home rates are so low likely reflects low pay across the nursing industry, including in nursing homes. Additionally, as skilled nurses leave Maryland and Virginia, there are fewer high-quality nurses available to accept openings in nursing home facilities. Thus, nursing homes must either hire a quick replacement who may not be up-to-par or operate without a full staff until a high-quality nurse is hired. In either situation, nursing home residents are likely to suffer as a result.
Is Your Loved One in a Maryland Nursing Home?
If you have a loved one in a Maryland nursing home, and you are concerned for their safety, contact the dedicated Maryland personal injury lawyers at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC. At Lebowitz & Mzhen, we represent nursing home residents and their families in abuse and neglect cases across Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. We have been holding nursing home employees and administrators responsible for over 20 years, and know what it takes to put together a successful case for our clients. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation to discuss your matter with an attorney today, call 410-654-3600.
More Blog Posts:
Federal Agency Takes Steps to Counter Low Nursing Home Staffing Levels in Maryland and Nationwide, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published December 14, 2018.
Criminal Charges Are Not Necessary to Pursue a Claim Against a Maryland Nursing Home for Abuse or Neglect, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published December 28, 2018.