It’s one of the worst things that can happen to a beloved family member, but sadly it happens every day. Elder abuse and neglect are rampant throughout New York State, and not every victim is lucky enough to have someone stand up for their rights.
A study conducted in New York estimated that there had been 260,000 older adults abused in some form in the state during the preceding year. That figure represents 1 in 13 adults 65 and older. The New York State Elder Abuse Prevalence Study found that the majority of abuse cases go unreported, with 24 unknown cases for every known one.
Elder abuse can include:
- Financial abuse
- Verbal abuse
- Emotional abuse
- Physical abuse
- Neglect leading to bedsores, malnutrition, dehydration, or preventable illness
If you suspect that an older family member is the victim of a care facility either through abuse or neglect, know that the law is on your side. State and federal laws govern the operation of nursing homes, long-term care facilities, and other older adult medical facilities. These laws make them responsible for the actions of their employees and accountable for the unfathomable acts they commit upon patients and residents. Having a Long Island nursing home abuse attorney represent your case can increase the chances that the facts will be heard and dealt with appropriately.
TonaLaw can be there for you and your family to help you ensure that your loved one’s case is reported and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Our New York nursing home abuse lawyers can also help you recover compensation for the damages your loved one has suffered, including the cost of any medical or psychological treatment needed to help them recover.
Report any potential abuse as soon as possible using the instructions in the section below. If you have any questions about your legal rights or you wish to pursue a possible negligence claim against a facility you can schedule a free, no-obligation consultation now.
Call us at 1-833-TONALAW or contact us online to schedule your free, confidential consultation today.
How to Report Suspected Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
Write Down the Facts of Your Case
If you suspect that there is nursing home abuse or neglect affecting your family member or a loved one, focus on gathering the facts. Record any signs of abuse, as well as victim statements, which may support your claims. Be specific with dates, staff names, departments within the care facility and any other facts that can help build your narrative and support your claims with more precision.
Report Abuse to Police if Someone Is in Immediate Danger
Any time you think someone is in immediate physical danger, contact 911 to report the problem and have police potentially intervene as soon as possible.
Report Incidents and Concerns Directly to the Nursing Home or Care Facility
You have the option of reporting concerns or asking questions directly to the care facility’s staff. Reporting an incident to the facility can be one of the most immediate ways to stop abuse from occurring. Demand an explanation for why this abuse was allowed to occur and how the facility intends to correct it and prevent it from occurring in the future.
Report Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect to the State of New York
You can report nursing home abuse complaints to the New York Department of Health by submitting an online form or by calling the complaint hotline at 1-888-201-4563.
For other types of facilities, you can call:
- Elder abuse in a family home: 1-800-342-3009
- Abuse or neglect in assisted living facilities: 1-866-893-6772
- Abuse, mistreatment, or neglect with home health aides: 1-800-628-5972
Contact a New York State Long Term Care Ombudsman
An ombudsman acts as a neutral representative for an abused older adult’s case, helping state and federal agencies gather objective information while managing your case to ensure that everyone is heard.
You can contact the office of the ombudsman serving your city or county by viewing the New York State ombudsman directory.
Signs of Elder Abuse and Neglect in Nursing Homes
Elder abuse can take many forms, and it is not always visible to those who don’t know what signs to look for. Family members, visitors, and advocates concerned about an individual can watch out for the following signs to determine whether or not abuse may be taking place:
- Bedsores also called pressure ulcers
- Recurring infections, especially around catheters or IV insertion points
- Poor personal hygiene
- Dramatically falling health signs
- Injuries from falls
- Unusual changes in behavior
- Mood swings or withdrawn behavior
- Lack of friendly interaction with staff or residents
- Sudden weight loss
- Inexplicable changes in medication regimen
- Obvious environmental or health hazards in the facility
- Fear of punishment for describing their conditions
Our loved ones can experience a number of changes as they advance in years, especially if they have recently moved to a new nursing home or facility, but these changes may be a cause for concern. Speak to your loved one openly and honestly to see if they might be hiding an experience with abuse or if they’ve been a victim of neglect. Demand to see the facility’s practices if you suspect neglect has put your loved one in danger or caused them undue discomfort.
Seeking Damages After Elder Abuse in Nursing Homes with a Qualified Attorney
You can help your loved one and your family recover from the devastating effects of abuse and neglect through a possible personal injury suit against the nursing home or related caregivers.
Many facilities exercise poor supervision or hire unqualified staff with a history of violence, drug use, or sexual abuse convictions. The facility itself may also have policies that encourage abuse or neglect, such as a system to overmedicate “problem” residents.
TonaLaw can provide you with a nursing home abuse lawyer to serve as your advocate and advisor while you determine the best course of action to take. We can assist you with filing a claim or lawsuit against the facility, and we do everything in our power to rigorously document the abuse and provide evidence to compel juries.
TonaLaw is a no-fee law firm – We get paid only when we win your case!
You can’t do everything in the world to prevent abuse from happening, but you can take the first step to stand up and fight. Learn what your next best steps might be during a free, confidential, no-obligation consultation by calling 1-833-TONALAW or using our convenient form to contact us online.