Illinois Nursing Home Abuse
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Nursing home malpractice is any intentional act or negligence committed by a nursing home professional that has the potential to cause physical, mental, or psychosocial harm to nursing home residents. Illinois attorneys that handle nursing home malpractice cases are known as nursing home abuse attorneys.
In Illinois, federal and state laws, such as the Nursing Home Care Act, regulate most nursing home facilities. This act sets forth the minimum standards to protect those who reside in these facilities. The Illinois Department of Public Health is responsible for licensing, certification and enforcement processes involved in nursing home care.
In spite of the many state and federal regulations which have been established to protect the elderly in these settings, gross violations continue to occur every single day, tragically compromising the health, well-being and dignity of some of the most vulnerable and helpless members of society.
Any act or failure to act caused by a nursing professional that causes harm to a patient is considered nursing home malpractice. Physical signs that may indicate a patient has been victimized by nursing home abuse can include: bedsores, pressure sores, infections, dehydration, malnutrition, burns, slip and fall accidents, medication errors, inappropriate physical restraint, and sexual abuse.
In all of the above examples the victim of nursing home abuse suffered some sort of actual injury at the hands of a nursing home professional. If there was no actual injury, you most likely do not have a cause of action for nursing home malpractice. For example, if your grandmother repeatedly presses the call button to and never gets a response but suffers no injury, there is no case, but rather a service issue that needs to be addressed. If there is a real injury you should hire a qualified attorney as soon as possible. It's important, especially in an environment where people come and go, to gather and preserve any relevant evidence as soon as possible.
Nursing home abuse attorneys typically take cases on a contingency basis. This means that they don't get paid unless your case wins. If your case wins, they receive a percentage of what you recover. If your case loses, they don't get paid. This means that nursing home abuse attorneys are very selective in determining what cases to take on. They not only need to prove an injury occurred, but also that it was a result of negligence.
Although Illinois has been proposing reforms, sadly many facilities are poorly staffed and patients don't always get the care that they need. The simple act of getting someone on their feet or just coming in to say hello can actually be the difference between life and death. It is truly shocking how many people end up dehydrated, ignored, forced to sit in their own filth or injured just because a staff member didn't care enough to take care of them. Most employees and homes do a great job, but regrettably not all do.
If you have reason to believe that your loved one has been injured, abused or neglected at an Illinois nursing home facility and you would like a referral to an experienced Illinois nursing home abuse attorney, please contact us. We don't promise you a result, but you have our word that we will offer you the same advice that we would give to a family member or friend.