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How Can A Bridgeport Nursing Home Attorney Help if My Loved One Has Been Injured?

Placing your loved one in a nursing home is a decision that is not made lightly. You know that it is in their best interest to have round-the-clock supervision and care available, and you know that you aren’t able to provide the level of attention and clinical expertise that they need, but you also worry that the home won’t provide the kind of care that you would.  So when your loved one has been injured and it is a result of negligence or abuse on the part of a staff member or the administration, you have the right to be upset and even outraged. When the nursing home accepted responsibility for your loved one they obligated themselves to provide a reasonable amount of care, and they failed.  At Perkins Injury Lawyers, our Bridgeport nursing home attorneys understand your concerns and we know what needs to be done. For immediate help, contact us immediately.

When an infirm person is placed into the care of a nursing home, they are often extremely vulnerable. They are frequently frail and unable to communicate, and being in a strange new place only adds to their confusion and their reliance upon the people who are there to provide their services. Nursing homes are expect to provide basic services, including dispensing the correct medications, ensuring that the residents in their care are safe, seeing to their basic hygiene needs and providing medical attention when needed. Failure in any of these services can lead to injury and constitutes negligence, yet it frequently happens as a result of overstaffing, lack of training, and general lack of interest or empathy on the part of staff members. Some even go so far as to intentionally inflict harm on residents out of frustration or malice. If you suspect that this is what has happened to your loved one then you need a strong and passionate advocate on your side. The Bridgeport nursing home attorneys at Perkins Injury Lawyers are diligent and empathetic. We will listen to you, examine the evidence, and act swiftly to ensure that your loved one is in a safe and protected place and that those responsible are made to pay.

When a nursing home resident is injured by those who have been entrusted with their care, it represents a tremendous betrayal of trust. The Bridgeport nursing home attorneys at Perkins Injury Lawyers will use our resources to show what has led to the injury, using expert witness testimony and medical records as well as evidence of understaffing, improper training, inadequate background checks, or whatever else has contributed to your loved one’s injuries. We will work to get you the compensation that you need to cover your loved one’s medical expenses for their injuries as well as their pain and suffering to get them the justice that they deserve. Call us today to set up a free consultation.

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Nursing Home Prescription Errors – Know The Signs

Placing someone you care about into a nursing home is a decision that nobody takes lightly. When you sign the papers, pack up their belongings and hand them over to the staff that will be providing them care, there is an overwhelming sense of helplessness and loss of control. Though you should always hope for the best, it is also important to be vigilant and cautious, as nursing home abuse and neglect happen all too frequently, and so do nursing home prescription errors. Mistakes in dosing and distributing medications have reached epidemic proportions in nursing homes throughout the country, so it is important that you are familiar with the signs and know what to do in case any of them begin to emerge.

There are countless reasons why medication errors take place so frequently in nursing home settings. Studies have shown that nursing home patients are frequently prescribed multiple drugs, with 68 percent of long-term care patients receiving nine or more medications per day, and one third receiving twenty or more.  Combine the volume of medications with the fact that patients are often unable to communicate and staff is often overworked and undertrained, and it is a recipe for disaster. One study has determined that approximately half of all adverse drug events are caused by medication errors, and it is these events that family members need to be on the lookout for. Adverse drug events can include:

  • Falls
  • Fractures
  • Malnutrition
  • Dehydration
  • Incontinence
  • Delirium
  • Behavior problems

The types of mistakes that lead to medication errors include lack of proper assessment of the resident, lack of monitoring of the patient for either effectiveness of the drug or negative side effects, lack of recognition on the part of the staff of adverse drug reactions, and attributing symptoms of adverse drug reactions to other causes.

The problems of providing medications to nursing home patients are varied. Physicians may be unaware of the various drugs that a patient is taking, or unable to keep up with the many patients in their charge and the possibility of drug interactions that may take place in a population that is taking so many medications. There are also problems with the general management of distributing, administering and monitoring medications. Drugs are frequently mistaken for one another, incorrect dosages are delivered, and lack of communication among staff members may lead to residents skipping doses or receiving double doses of medicines.

The regulations that govern nursing homes require that great care is taken with administering medication to this fragile population. There are strategies available for improving the situation, including implementing process and tools for documentation, increased efficiency and controls, but nursing homes often forego these options due to cost considerations. This leaves residents at risk, and family members responsible for keeping a careful eye on how their loved one is responding and reacting within the nursing home setting.

If you have concerns that your loved one is the victim of nursing home prescription errors, it is important that you act quickly. The compassionate lawyers at Jonathan Perkins Attorneys At Law have extensive experience in protecting the rights of nursing home and long-term care residents, and we can help your loved one too.

Learn more about Nursing Home Prescription Errors here:  https://800perkins.com/what-we-do/nursing-home-abuse/

Nursing Home Abuse: Signs To Watch Out For

Making the decision to put a loved one into the care of a nursing home can be a highly emotional process, but news reports about nursing home abuse make things even more difficult.  No matter how thoroughly you research the facility that you select, there is always the nagging sensation that you might have missed something, or that the facility itself is not as careful as they should be in screening their employees, and you are right to worry. Statistics indicate that roughly one in ten nursing home residents are victimized by abuse and that beyond that number, one in 14 cases is never detected or reported. As the child, friend or relative of a nursing home resident, this means that once your loved one is situated, you need to be even more vigilant and keep alert for the numerous warning signs of abuse.

To be on the lookout for abuse, you must also understand that it can come in several different forms, including physical, emotional, sexual, and financial. Residents can also be subject to neglect by caregivers, which can also be deadly. The signs that you need to watch out for are extensive, and include:

  • Changes in personality
  • Tension between the resident and caregiver
  • Unexplained injuries, including bruises
  • Broken bones, sprains or dislocations
  • Broken eyeglasses
  • Restraint marks on wrists
  • Caregiver refusing to allow you to be alone with the resident
  • Rocking, sucking or mumbling
  • Withdrawal
  • Bruising around breasts or genitals
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Vaginal or anal bleeding
  • Torn, stained or bloody sheets or underwear
  • Substantial withdrawals of money from accounts
  • Personal items and cash missing
  • Unexplained and inappropriate credit card purchases

Signs of neglect include:

  • Weight loss, malnutrition, dehydration
  • Bed sores
  • Dirty sheets, clothing, unchanged diapers
  • Resident is dirty or unbathed
  • Clothing inappropriate or insufficient
  • Hazardous or insufficient conditions in environment, including lack of heat or hot water, obstacles in hallways
  • Residents left sitting unattended in public places

There are a number of reasons why nursing home abuse takes place. Caring for an infirm person can be immensely rewarding but can also be exhausting and stressful, particularly when caring for a number of residents. Nursing home employees are often overworked and underpaid and the facilities themselves are often understaffed. Because finding appropriate staff can be difficult, many facilities cut corners, skipping essential background checks and hiring staff members who are underqualified, lack appropriate training and are insufficiently supervised.

Placing a loved one into the care of a nursing home facility is a matter of trust, and when that trust is betrayed and a resident shows signs of being a victim of abuse or neglect, it is essential that you act quickly and decisively in order to ensure that they are safe and protected.  Take whatever action is necessary, including taking photos of injuries, gathering medical records and removing them to another facility, informing the authorities and filing a complaint with the appropriate agencies. The compassionate, experienced nursing home abuse attorney from Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers

can help you with this process and assist you in holding the responsible parties accountable.

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Elder Abuse: A 101 Guide to Spotting Elder Abuse

If you have an elderly loved one who is living in an assisted living community, a nursing home, or some other environment that is outside of your constant access, you probably worry about them a great deal. Not only are elderly at risk for all of the conditions and issues that can come with old age and failing health, but there are also issues of elder abuse and neglect that are cause for concern.  Whether you are worried about a neighbor, a parent or relative, or a long-time friend who is at risk, it is important that you familiarize yourself with the warning signs of elder abuse so that you can take action quickly if you see it.

The most common indications that an older person may be being victimized by an abuser include:

  • Signs of physical abuse, including unexplained bruises on their body, broken bones for which there are no good explanations, burn or abrasion marks on the skin, and pressure marks on the wrists, ankles or waist that may indicate that they have been restrained
  • Signs of emotional abuse, including changes in mood, such as depression or withdrawal and diminished interest in engagement with normal social activities and hobbies
  • Signs of sexual abuse, including bruising around the genitals or breasts, bloody underwear, pajamas or bed sheets, and evidence of sexually transmitted diseases
  • Signs of financial abuse and exploitation usually show up in credit card bills with unexplained charges for items that they are not likely to use, withdrawals from financial accounts, missing personal items and cash, and a general change in their financial situation
  • Signs of neglect include bedsores, malnutrition, dehydration, unusual weight loss, and unattended hygiene and medical needs
  • Lack of cooperation or evidence of tension from the staff, including refusing to let you see your loved one without them being present in the room at the same time

It is important to keep in mind that not every negative occurrence that takes place in the life of an elderly person is an indication of abuse. The elderly person may be prone to bruising as a result of medication that they are taking, may lose their balance easily and that can result in a fall. However, if the person that you are concerned about expresses fear or tells you that they are being abused, it is important to take them seriously. It is generally a good idea to schedule visits to a nursing home or care facility at a variety of times without announcing when you can be expected.

If you do suspect elder abuse or neglect, your first step needs to be ensuring the safety of your loved one. Call the appropriate authorities, as it is better to be safe than sorry and a truly caring facility will appreciate that you are acting out of concern. If you find that your loved one has been victimized and you need legal representation in order to help pay for any medical expenses, relocation needs or damages that they have suffered, the caring attorneys at Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers can help. Contact us today to set up an immediate appointment.

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Nursing Home Prescription Errors: Protect Your Loved Ones if They Are Victims of Prescription Error

The statistics regarding nursing home prescription errors are frightening. According to the National Institutes of Health there are over 50 million medication errors made in nursing homes every year, and over three million of those have the potential for having life-threatening results. Each year roughly 800,000 residents of a long-term care or nursing home setting are injured as a result of a medication mistake, and 100,000 die. The two most common medication errors that occur are delayed delivery of medication and delivering either the wrong dose or the completely wrong medication. The statistic that may be most frightening is the one that says that it’s estimated that only 1.5 percent of these mistakes are actually reported.

If you are a person who has a parent, grandparent, friend or family member residing in a nursing home then you have good cause for concern. Not only do these errors happen on a regular basis, but nursing homes have also been found to improperly medicate patients on purpose in order to keep them quiet. This “chemical restraint” happens all too frequently, with residents being given anti-psychotic drugs in order to minimize the outward expressions of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, or simply frustration.  When residents are given medication incorrectly, whether purposefully or by accident, it is simply unacceptable and often dangerous. Nursing home residents are placed in care specifically because they are in a fragile state of health. A missed medication can have repercussions because what has been prescribed is often essential, and an incorrect medication can t cause harm to a system that is already in a weakened state.

There are many reasons why nursing homes make errors in the delivery of prescription medication. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) says that Americans who are 75 or older take an average of eleven medications over a one-year period. Multiplying that many medications per person by the number of residents being cared for in a single facility creates a need for high level administration of drug delivery, but nursing homes are notoriously short-staffed and undertrained.  Add to that the fact that medications can be mislabeled, or two medications with similar names can be confused, and you have a recipe for disaster.

Despite the difficulty inherent with the delivery of prescription medications in an nursing home, it is the responsibility of the home to prevent these errors from occurring. Failure to do so is negligence, and can result in serious injury or even death. If you suspect that your loved one is experiencing some kind of adverse reaction to a medication error it is essential that you seek medical attention for them immediately. When dealing with somebody in compromised health, a delay can be deadly. If you find that a medication error was made and it was the fault of the nursing home that you entrusted with your loved one’s care, seek help from an attorney immediately. Nursing home prescription medication mistakes can be costly in terms of your loved one’s health and well being, as well as resulting medical costs. The attorneys at Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers are here to help.

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Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers: Know The Signs Of Nursing Home Abuse

Placing a loved one into the care of a nursing home is one of the most difficult decisions a family can make. No matter what the circumstances or how plain the need for skilled medical help, there is always a degree of guilt about putting the responsibility for care into somebody else’s hands and the fear of the unknown.

The news today is filled with stories of nursing home residents facing abuse at the hands of those tasked with providing their most basic needs. Nursing home workers are often underpaid, undertrained and overworked, providing a recipe for anger, frustration and apathy. At Perkins Law, we believe that no matter how reputable the facility you’ve chosen for your loved one, it is essential for you to educate yourself about the signs of nursing home abuse and neglect and remain vigilant. You cannot rely upon your loved one to tell you what is happening — in some cases they are incapable of communicating what is happening or may fear retribution, while others may remain stoic, choosing not to burden family members with their problems.

Nursing home abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual, or financial, and each has its own signs and warning signals. The most critical indications include:

  • Unexplained bruising or bleeding
  • Bed sores or cuts
  • Burns or scrapes
  • Weight loss
  • Poor personal hygiene, unchanged sheets, soiled linens and clothes
  • Infections
  • Torn or stained clothing, bloody clothing or bedding

In addition to these, family members should also take note of changes in behavior, which an be an indication of intimidation, neglect, or theft:

  • Lack of responsiveness
  • Fearful behavior and apparent paranoia
  • Emotional and physical withdrawal
  • Personal items missing
  • Unusual financial transactions

The behaviors and indications listed here may represent physical abuse such as assault and battery, forced restraint either through physical means or chemical means (drugging the resident into a state of quiet), and even rape. Emotional abuses that take place in nursing homes take the form of either total neglect in which the resident is left sitting alone for hours, not fed, isolated and disregarded, or active abuse in the form of insults, threats, and humiliation.

It is incumbent upon family and friends to stay alert and on the lookout for any signs and to take quick action if you suspect that something may be wrong. If you see any of the signs listed above, or are visiting with your loved one and find that the staff is acting in an unusual way such as not leaving you alone in the room with the resident or delaying your access to them, this is neither normal nor acceptable and is cause for concern. Disregarding warning signs can put your loved one at risk. At the first inkling of a problem have a discussion with management, and if this does not dispel your worries then it may be time to seek outside help. The dedicated attorneys at Perkins Law are experienced nursing home abuse lawyers who will take immediate action.


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Medicare’s Nursing Home Ratings Hide Problems

Nursing home abuse can affect all individuals in assisted care facilities—even those with luxury amenities and the highest rankings.

Reports of abuse originate in from all areas of the country and affect all types of residential facilities. In the past week, allegations of abuse have been reported in multiple state, including:

  • Brownsville, Kentucky: Three individuals were charged with 69 counts of criminal elder abuse at Genesis Healthcare Edmonson Center Nursing Home.
  • Des Moines, Iowa:The Woodland Terrace care facility in Waverly was awarded the 2014 Governor’s Award for Quality Care even though it had just been cited for unsanitary conditions and failing to provide residents with meals as provided in their care plans.
  • Long Island, New York:A nurse at the Bayview Nursing and Rehabilitation Center was charged with multiple counts of endangering the welfare of a vulnerable elderly person.
  • Watsonville, California:Federal prosecutors are suing the Country Villa Watsonville East Nursing Center and County Villa Watsonville West Nursing Center for accepting over $20 million in fraudulent Medicare and Medicaid payments, as well as persistently and severely overmedicating patients.

Many people who have loved ones in nursing or assisted care facilities are surprised when allegations of abuse surface, mainly because the majority of facilities have multiple stars on the government’s 5-star rating system.

The New York Times recently completed an investigation into the current rating systems, and found that many of these ratings are overinflated. The Times’ research showed that although 1/5 of nursing homes enjoy a 5-star rating from Medicare, these numbers are skewed because the data is largely self-reported.

Medicare uses three measures of quality to rate facilities. Two of the three measures are based on self-reported, unverified data. Additionally, the rating system does not take consumer complaints or government fines and punishments into account. Only the facilities’ annual health inspections are verified by a source which comes from outside the facilities themselves.

Two of the three quality measures are based on self-reported, unverified data.

The Times used Rosewood Nursing Home in Carmichael, California as an example. Rosewood is 5-star rated even though they were fined $100,000 last year, (the highest fine available to the state of California). In addition, the facility has racked up 102 complaints and a dozen lawsuits in the past four years.

This example is not unique. Of the over 50 facilities on the federal watch list for quality, nearly 2/3 rated themselves at four or five stars for staff levels and quality of care (the self-reported items), even though their health inspection results came in at one and two stars.

Advocates for elder care say that these rankings falsely inflate consumer confidence in the quality of care their loved ones are receiving. At Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers, we know that it can be hard to find accurate reviews of nursing home facilities. That’s why our attorneys advise everyone with loved ones in nursing facilities to speak with them often, visit frequently, and ensure that they are being cared for properly.

If you become aware of mistreatment in a nursing home, Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers will help you get justice for your loved one. Our experiencednursing home attorneyswill fight for you, and work to get you and your family the compensation you deserve. Call1-800-PERKINSto speak with an injury attorney today.

Four Nursing Homes Fined for Abuse, Injuries

Four Connecticut nursing homes are being fined over $1,000 each for incidents that led to cuts, bruises and a broken bone in residents, along with one count of physical abuse.

If you suspect a loved one has been subjected toneglect or abuse at a nursing home or assisted living facility, we’re here to help. You need someone on your side that can explain your legal rights and the options available to you. Contact us today for a free, confidential legal evaluation.

Arden House

A fine of $1,020 was issued to Arden House in Hamden on January 23 for an incident of physical abuse involving a resident and nurse’s aide, according to Department of Public Health records.

The incident was first reported on October 31 by a resident with a history of making unsubstantiated claims against Arden House staff. The resident alleged that the nurse’s aide undressed and pinched the resident in the groin, according to records. The facility investigated the incident and found evidence to substantiate the story, leading Arden House to fire the nurse’s aide. The aide has denied the abuse allegations.

Arden House spokesperson Jeanne Moore says the aide was suspended as soon as the resident’s accusations were expressed, and that the facility immediately began investigations and contacted authorities. Moore says that Arden House has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to resident abuse.

Highlands Health Care Center

Cheshire long-term care facility Highlands Health Care Center was subject to two fines for separate citations in February. The first incident involved an unsupervised resident’s fall accident, which occurred on September 1, 2013. The resident had been left alone in a restroom and was found bleeding from the head underneath the sink. According to records, the resident (who suffer from dementia) sustained a laceration on the face which required 10 staples to close. According to reports from the New Haven Register, the resident was left alone by one aide after being told by another that the resident was able to visit the restroom alone. The facility’s conclusion was that the resident should not have been left alone. The facility was fined $1,090 on February 4.

The other incident led to a fine of $1,160 on February 25, and involved a resident who developed a deep pressure sore on the heel. Records reflect that the resident was not informed on how to safely move the feet until the bedsore developed.

Cassena Care at Norwalk

Cassena Care at Norwalk was fined $1,160 on January 17, in connection with a fall accident. The resident, who suffers from dementia and is known to become agitated and somewhat violent, fell off a shower chair on September 19, 2013. The resident was then treated at a hospital for bruises, a laceration to the face, and a broken bone in the face. According to the nurse’s aide that was caring for the patient at the time, the resident became agitated and pushed very hard against the shower wall, causing the chair to tip and the resident to fall. Records show that Cassena Care had failed to properly administer the resident’s anxiety medication, leading to the resident’s agitation and subsequent fall.

St. Joseph’s Living Center

Windham facility St. Joseph’s Living Center was subject to a fine of $1,160 on February 25 in connection with an incident that took place following Christmas Eve Mass. The New Haven Register reports that the resident was found bleeding on the ground by a visitor, and was taken to the hospital to be treated for a laceration close to the eye.

According to records, the resident was attending Mass when his or her walker was placed at a distance, and that the events following mass became confusing, allowing the resident to walk away unattended and went outside.

Administrator Lynn Iverson said that the facility reported the event immediately, and has added more staff members for weekends and special events.

Are Nursing Home Thieves Defrauding Your Loved One?

Jeff Rossen, NBC’s national correspondent for consumer interests, recently reported on an unfortunate pattern of crimes that has pervaded assisted living facilities across the U.S.: defrauding the elderly, particularly nursing home residents.

Several stories have come to light exposing the tactics of some nursing home employees who misappropriate or downright steal the funds from residents’ accounts, in many cases lifting upwards of several tens of thousands of dollars from them.

Leo Foster and his family are victims of nursing home theft and fraud—his mother was exploited while a resident at the Vicksburg Convalescence Center in Vicksburg, Miss.

“It made me feel sick at my stomach. It just didn’t dawn on me that someone would be so low as to steal from a vulnerable adult,” said Leo’s wife, Phyllis.

Leo and Phyllis discovered that the office coordinator at the nursing home, Lee Ray Martin, had been stealing from Leo’s mother, and after the Fosters investigated they discovered that between 12 and 15 cash withdrawals had been made from Leo’s mother’s account.

Leo Foster’s mother was not her only victim, it seemed, as Martin was further accused of embezzling over $100,000 out of the accounts of 83 different residents at the nursing home. In August Martin pleaded guilty to 29 counts of exploitation of a vulnerable person, and to one count of conspiracy.

Oddly, there are no universal background checks or regulations in hiring employees in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, which might explain the rash of recent issues. The most alarming factor in the Fosters’ story is that it could happen to almost anyone with a loved one in a nursing home. Even more frightening, Lee Ray Martin could, hypothetically, find a job at a similar institution in another state without any hesitation or problem due to the lack of regulations within the industry.

Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood offered his opinion on the nature of an embezzler, saying simply that if they have done it once, “they’re gonna do it again.”

In order to protect your loved ones while they are in an elder care assisted living facility or nursing home, request to see monthly statements from any account that is being handled for them. This way, it is easier to spot discrepancies and correct them. Nursing homes are required to carry insurance for an occasion that money has in fact gone missing, so it is likely that any missing funds can be returned.

For help with a claim of nursing home neglect, abuse, or injury,contactJonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers at1-800-PERKINS
or by filling out the “Free Case Evaluation” form at the top of the page.

Former Football Hall of Famer Dies as a Result Nursing Home Neglect

No one ever wants to think that their parent could suffer from nursing home abuse, but that is not always the case

Pro-football Hall of Famer George McAfee developed dementia in is older years. His family determined the best option for him was to live in an assisted living facility so he could be monitored around the clock. This decision turned out to be the most horrific decision the family has ever made. According to their claims, the family says McAfee died an excruciating and humiliating death in 2009. He wandered unsupervised into a cleaning closet and drank from a bottle of industrial size detergent. McAfee’s daughter Cheryl said caregivers said McAfee’s face looked like a “horror show mask”., he died 10 days later.

This is just one example of nursing home abuse. A recent study found that 50 percent of suspicious nursing home deaths are linked to nursing home patient abuse and exploitation. Nursing home abuse can be difficult to recognize, but there are some warning signs. If you ever feel like you loved one is suffering at the hands of a caretaker call 911 immediately.

At Jonathan Perkins Injury Lawyers we have over 140 years of combined legal experience and the knowledge and resources to handle your nursing home abuse case.


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