Tennessee Nursing Home Physical Abuse Lawyer

Physical abuse in a nursing home is unfortunately a far too common occurrence. A staff member may either be careless or negligent and can harm an individual severely. This type of violence and disregard for a patient’s safety is not tolerated.

If you or a loved one has been harmed while in a nursing home, it is crucial that you contact a knowledgeable Tennessee nursing home physical abuse lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney will be able to help fight to recover any damages you deserve.

Types of Physical Abuse

Physical abuse relates to the breach of standard of care in a nursing home facility. This can be anything that an average person would see as physical abuse, like being hit or struck. It could also be a physical abuse that took place because the resident was not getting proper care, such as possibly being dropped. There are many cases where people are dropped during transfers to nursing homes and they might have fractures of broken bones whether it be a hip fracture, leg fracture, or shoulder restraint.

This may occur when there was an unauthorized use of restraint such as tying someone to a bed or chair to keep them from wandering, which is classified as physical abuse. It can also be any type of physical harm that is done to the resident whether it be negligent or reckless behavior that should have not occurred that could constitute physical abuse in a nursing home.

The most common example of physical abuse would be when a CNT, a nurse, or a tech are unnecessarily rough with a resident. If they hit or strike residents, are reckless in their transfers, rough when they move patients in an out of beds, or if they drop the patients when they should not have, an employee can be charged with physical abuse. This is the most common physical abuse seen in nursing homes. A Tennessee nursing home physical abuse lawyer will best be able to determine the specifics of the particular case, and prosecute it accordingly.

Most Vulnerable Individuals

The most vulnerable residents are those that do not have the mental capability to stand up for themselves, such as elderly patients with Alzheimer's or dementia. Young patients who have some type of mental retardation or other mental handicap are also often vulnerable. Any patient that cannot communicate what is going on in their life can be vulnerable to physical abuse. No matter the type of patient involved, an individual should always contact an experienced Tennessee nursing home physical abuse lawyer to explore their options legally.

Warning Signs

Unexplained cuts or bruises is often a warning sign of physical abuse. A person may also have drastic and unexplained changes in their emotions or mental state, and that is often a sign that there is physical abuse. If they are withdrawing, not talking, and are acting out then this can also be a sign.

Use of Force

There are very few times when nursing home staff would be able to use force when dealing with residents. The only time this would be acceptable is if they are using force to keep that resident from harming themselves or from harming another patient or staff member. If the nursing home resident is having some type of psychotic episode, then the staff has to address that issue and possibly restrain the person.

There is always an extreme example of somebody being hit or struck when they should not be. Most commonly, a CNT or nurse is overworked and they are too rough with the patient because they are in a hurry or they physically restrain a patient because they do not have the time or extra assistance to deal with the patient, and do not want that patient getting out of bed. This sort of abuse should not be tolerated inside a nursing home facility, and should be handled with the experience of a Tennessee nursing home physical abuse attorney.

Contacting an Attorney

The steps to take after learning of the physical abuse depend on how drastic the suspected abuse is. If somebody thinks something may be going on but is not quite sure, or just wants to explore or investigate more, an individual should start with the nursing home itself and try to get answers from the people running it. If somebody sees a bruise or a cut on their loved one, they can go to the administrator. If the administrator explains the incident and apologizes, offering a reasonable explanation, and if an individual is comfortable that it will not happen again, then that might be enough to squash the concern.

However, if something has happened repeatedly or if there is more concern, the family and friends of the individual might want to remove the resident from the facility. A person can also contact the police if they think that somebody has been assaulted. Most importantly, an individual should consult with an experienced Tennessee nursing home physical abuse lawyer before taking any legal steps. A knowledgeable attorney will be able help maximize any damages you or a loved one may be entitled to.