Nursing home residents have the right to reside in a safe facility free from abuse of all kinds. Abuse can take different forms, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, neglect or isolation, financial abuse and exploitation, and emotional abuse. Under Maryland Family Law Article § 14-101, abuse is defined as “the sustaining of any physical injury by a vulnerable adult as a result of cruel or inhumane treatment or as a result of a malicious act by any person.”
Maryland nursing homes have a responsibility to keep residents safe by taking steps to prevent abuse. Nursing homes must develop and implement written policies and procedures that prohibit the abuse and neglect of their residents. Nursing homes also cannot employ individuals who have been found guilty of abusing, neglecting or mistreating residents, and nursing homes are required to check the state’s nurse aide registry. In addition, nursing homes are required to investigate and report all allegations of abuse within 24 hours after discovery of any incident. Reports from investigations must be reported to Maryland’s Office of Health Care Qualify within five working days of the alleged violation.
Signs of abuse can be wide-ranging, but may include missing property, insufficient funds in bank accounts, unsanitary living conditions, bedsores, fear of a certain person, broken bones, unexplained injuries, and a history of repeated injuries.
Nursing Home Worker Pleads Guilty to Sexual Assault
According to a local news source, a former employee recently pleaded guilty in criminal court to sexually assaulting a nursing home resident. The employee was charged with sodomy and elder abuse, and ultimately pleaded guilty to attempted sodomy, in exchange for the other charges being dropped.
Evidently, the employee was a certified nursing assistant at the nursing home. He was fired after he was accused of assaulting the resident last year. According to court records, the employee was seen straddling the resident and engaging in a sex act. He then jumped off of the victim and crouched next to the bed, according to a police officer. The victim reportedly said that the employee forced him to perform a sex act and assaulted him. The victim was a 68-year-old man, who later died from an unrelated health issue before the case was resolved.
The employee is scheduled to be sentenced later this month. Prosecutors have agreed on a 15-year sentence, but the employee would only have to serve 18 months in prison, with the remainder of the term of imprisonment suspended as long as he successfully completes 60 months of probation.
Talk to a Maryland Personal Injury Lawyer
If you believe that your loved one has suffered from abuse at a nursing home, other residents are at risk. Do not waste any time before speaking with an experienced Maryland personal injury attorney. The personal injury attorneys Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC can advise you regarding the proper steps to take in order to obtain compensation and protect others. If you believe your loved one in Maryland or the Washington D.C. area has suffered from nursing home abuse or neglect, call us for a free, no-obligation consultation by email or by phone at 410-654-3600.
More Blog Posts:
Federal Government Attempts to Combat Underreporting of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect in Maryland and Nationwide, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published November 14, 2018.
Veterans Reportedly “Routinely Receiving Substandard Care” in VA Nursing Home, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published November 29, 2018.