The thought of a nurse who is charged with the care of elderly individuals engaging in a pattern of abuse against his or her patients is bad enough, but lately there has been a rash of cases in which abusive nurses are filming the abuse and posting the videos on social media. The victims in these videos are almost always mentally or physically ill nursing home residents who do not have the ability to fight back or even to ask their abusers to stop.
Of course, this kind of conduct is a violation of the duty of care that all nurses have to their patients. In fact, this duty of care extends beyond just licensed nurses and applies to anyone charged with the care of another person in a skilled nursing facility. When this type of abuse is discovered, the abused individual or their family may be able to seek financial compensation for the abuse and humiliation suffered through a Maryland nursing home abuse lawsuit.
Politicians Condemn Nursing Home Abuse, Seeking More Prosecutions
Aside from being a violation of the duty between caretaker and resident, nursing home abuse is also against the law. In fact, according to one news report, the Chairman for the Senate Judiciary Committee has been probing the U.S. Justice Department about how aggressively it pursues cases alleging nursing home abuse that has been posted on social media.
Most of the 18 cited cases involved nursing home employees posting nude pictures of elderly residents in compromising positions, or while being physically or emotionally abused by the nurse. Some allegations include nurses grabbing residents’ arms and making them hit themselves in the head.
A spokesperson for the American Health Care Association agreed that such conduct is “wrong” but explained that it is “infrequent” or “uncommon.” He said that the Association has recently focused on training staff members on the importance of individual privacy and the boundaries necessary in providing care to the elderly. There is no indication as to whether there will be any department-wide changes in the U.S. Department of Justice. However, the fact that the issue is getting national attention bodes well for nursing home residents and their families.
Has Your Loved One Suffered While in a Maryland Nursing Home?
Nursing home abuse is often hard to detect. While it is sometimes caught on camera or reported by the victim, that is not always the case. Often, residents who are able to communicate with their loved ones feel ashamed of what has happened, or are not believed when they disclose how they have suffered. However, nursing home abuse is real. To learn more about Maryland nursing home abuse cases, call 410-654-3600 to speak with a dedicated personal injury attorney. Calling is free and will not result in any obligation on your part unless we are able to help you obtain compensation.
More Blog Posts:
Nursing Home Lawsuits Brought by Surviving Family Members, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published March 28, 2016.
Arbitration Clauses in Nursing Home Contracts: Are They Binding?, Maryland Nursing Home Lawyer Blog, published March 7, 2016.