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Vigorously Protecting Elderly Victims of Abuse & Neglect

Elderly people often require specialized healthcare and residence in an assisted living facility. It is not always an easy decision for families to entrust their parents and grandparents to a nursing home. However, when they do, they expect nursing homes to take care of them. When nursing homes do not satisfy this obligation, vulnerable elderly adults are the ones who suffer the consequences.

Instances of elder abuse and neglect at nursing homes are extremely upsetting and require swift action. If you believe that your loved one is suffering from abuse or neglect within their nursing home, you need an experienced Frederick nursing home abuse lawyer to advocate on their behalf. Time is of the essence. Our experienced litigation team from Portner & Shure, P.A. in Frederick is ready to help you and your loved ones. We have advocated for victims of nursing home negligence for more than 30 years.

You can contact us online or by phone at (240) 770-0509 to request a free and confidential consultation.

Indicators of Nursing Home Negligence & Abuse

Given the typical vulnerability of elders, they may not be able to tell their family members if they are suffering from abuse. This communication barrier may persist because they suffer from memory loss, have difficulty communicating, or are afraid of repercussions from their abuser for speaking up. The responsibility usually falls on family members to recognize if their loved ones are experiencing abuse or neglect.

Signs of nursing home abuse and neglect include:

  • Unexplained falls and bruises
  • Changes in weight (including malnutrition)
  • Dehydration
  • Bedsores
  • Broken bones or other injuries from falling
  • Unexplained withdrawals from bank accounts
  • Behavioral changes
  • Family members being discouraged from visiting
  • Inexplicable anger, fear, or crying
  • Reluctance to speak in front of staff members
  • Continuously being kept in an over-medicated state
  • Unkempt appearance
  • Poor staff-to-resident ratio
  • Lack of facility maintenance and poor upkeep
  • Soiled bedsheets or clothing
  • Sudden adjustments to a power of attorney, will, or trust
  • Wandering and confusion

What is Nursing Home Abuse?

When you place your loved one in a nursing home, the nursing home assumes responsibility for their wellbeing, including their medical care, physical health, emotional happiness, and mental stability. Nursing home abuse can be defined as a form of torture that is made possible through a nursing home’s failure to care for the residents in the facility.

Under federal law, nursing home abuse includes the willful infliction of injury, intimidation, or punishment with resulting physical harm, unreasonable confinement, pain, or mental anguish. Nursing home abuse also includes sexual assault, emotional and mental abuse, financial abuse, physical assault, deprivation of food, water, and medication, and imprisonment.

The perpetrators of nursing home abuse are oftentimes the staff members entrusted with your loved one’s care. All too often nursing home managers fail to conduct an adequate background check on employees. This results in hiring staff members that are unfit for their responsibilities, or who have a criminal history of domestic violence, assault, or sexual abuse.

Defining Nursing Home Neglect

Nursing home abuse is distinguishable from nursing home neglect. Nursing home abuse includes an aspect of intent, but neglect involves indifference to an elder’s care or gross inattentiveness. Nursing home negligence centers on whether your loved one was given the quality of care that would be considered standard by any reasonable person in the same situation.

Some of the most common forms of nursing home negligence include:

  • Inadequate staff training: Staff members may have received inadequate training and failed to prevent infections, bedsores, and injuries. This failure qualifies as nursing home negligence. It is also a nursing home’s job to ensure its residents have access to medical appointments, such as providing transportation to nearby clinics. A staff member’s failure to make the necessary doctors’ appointments may qualify as nursing home negligence.
  • Failing to provide goods and services: Nursing home neglect also encompasses a nursing home’s failure to provide the required goods and services to avoid mental and physical harm. Nursing home neglect also pertains to the failure to provide adequate food and water.
  • Medication mistakes: This type of nursing home negligence includes failing to inform medical providers of medical issues, failing to administer a needed medication, administering an improper dose of medication, and providing an insufficient explanation of risks associated with the medications provided.
  • Overlooking patient concerns: Residents may be informing their nursing home of medical concerns, but they are ignored.

Nursing Home Abuse & COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to even more cases of nursing home negligence than in recent memory. Budget restrictions have resulted in nursing homes being understaffed. Space limitations have also kept sick elders in rooms with healthy residents, spreading the virus rapidly. Consequently, there has been an increase in injuries, illnesses, and deaths in nursing homes since the pandemic began. Elderly people are being harmed as a direct result of the negligence of nursing home staff members, management, and companies.

The Maryland Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have provided additional guidance for nursing homes in the COVID-19 era. If these guidelines are not implemented, then it can constitute willful nursing home neglect. What is even more troubling is that many nursing homes are now requiring their elderly residents to sign coronavirus waivers that say they cannot sue for catching the coronavirus due to the nursing home’s neglect.

If you are concerned that after your family member was harmed by the negligence of the nursing home, and then they tried to force them to sign away their rights, you need an experienced litigation team on your side. It is best to have a Frederick nursing home neglect lawyer review any liability releases before simply signing them, too. At Portner & Shure, we are currently accepting cases involving nursing home negligence related to the coronavirus pandemic.

Lawyers Pursuing Nursing Home Neglect Cases

A nursing home can be sued for negligence based on its failure to provide a reasonable level of care to its residents. This may require an expert to testify as to what the appropriate level of care is, and how the defending nursing home failed to provide it. To navigate the complex issues inherent to such a case, you should work with an experienced Frederick nursing home lawsuit attorney to research the circumstances surrounding the abuse or neglect and to get a full picture of how such a terrible thing happened. We will investigate your case so that you can focus your attention on your loved one and taking care of them.

Injuries & Damages

In this troubling time, you deserve considerate advocates focused on finding the best way for you to move forward. Our Frederick lawyers at Portner & Shure, P.A. are committed to keeping your loved ones safe and obtaining the relief necessary to pay for their current and future care expenses as well as all other types of economic damage compensation. A victim of nursing home abuse may also suffer from emotional distress and other intangible pains, which can warrant additional noneconomic damages.

We will work tirelessly to provide you with attentive and responsive service focused on the needs of your family throughout this trying time. Our litigation team will review your case, speak with the nursing home at issue, and work on your behalf to successfully obtain the emotional and financial compensation you deserve.

Portner & Shure, P.A. – Expect More

Our team of compassionate lawyers takes on many Frederick nursing home abuse cases, in addition to cases all around the state of Maryland. We have been successfully advocating on behalf of Frederick families for more than 30 years, earning 5-star reviews from our clients and high praise from legal communities along the way. Members of our legal team have been recognized by Time Magazine, and some are even members of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers, the Multimillion Dollar Advocates Forum, the Best Attorneys of America.

Our law firm does not receive attorneys’ fees unless we secure a settlement or judgment for our client. We don’t win unless you do!

Give us a call at (240) 770-0509 or contact us online to discuss your case with our Frederick nursing home abuse lawyers.


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