Nursing home abuse occurs when a nursing home causes injury to one of their residents, whether it be a physical injury or an economic injury. Sexual abuse in a nursing home would include any unwanted touching of a sexual nature. Common examples of sexual abuse in nursing homes can be one resident sexually abusing another resident because the folks that are supposed to be taking care of them are not paying attention. In other circumstances, it can be actually an employee or a caregiver who is the one doing the sexual abuse. If an individual suspects that a loved one is being sexually abused in their nursing home, they should consult a Palm Beach Gardens sexual abuse lawyer. A compassionate nursing home abuse attorney could work tirelessly to hold the negligent party liable and achieve the best possible outcome.
Warning Signs That a Loved One is Being Abused
Warning signs of sexual abuse include a change in the resident’s attitude, the resident making statements of fear about the caregivers or about another resident, and physical injury. The types of patients that are most vulnerable to sexual abuse in a nursing home are those that are least able to stand up for themselves, including people who have significant physical limitations, significant limitations in their ability to communicate or remember things, and residents who do not have regular visits by family members and loved ones.
Duty of Care to Protect Nursing Home Residents
Nursing home residents are among the most vulnerable in our society, and the duty of care for a nursing home is to ensure that they get the best care possible. In Florida, both Chapter 400 of the Florida Statutes and federal law are the legal bases for this duty of care, as well as any doctors who were responsible for the care of the resident in the nursing home.
The nursing home has an obligation to ensure that its residents are free from physical and mental abuse, so they are required to be proactive in evaluating and monitoring the daily happenings to ensure that their residents are not subjected to physical or sexual abuse.
What to Do if Sexual Abuse is Suspected?
The first thing that someone should do if they suspect that nursing home sexual abuse is occurring is to take all steps necessary to provide protection, whether that is complaining to the folks that are responsible for the nursing home who may not understand what is happening, calling in the state, calling the police, or getting the residents out of the facility. They should trust their gut and, if they think abuse is going wrong, they should keep acting until they feel like they have fixed the problem. An individual should also consult a Palm Beach Gardens sexual abuse lawyer that could help them hold the nursing home liable for the abuse.
Consulting a Palm Beach Gardens Nursing Home Sexual Abuse Lawyer
If someone believes that a loved one is being sexually abused in a nursing home, the first thing they should do is take the steps necessary to ensure the safety of the resident and end the abuse. They should call the authorities and call an experienced Palm Beach Gardens sexual abuse lawyer.
Nursing home abuse lawyers can provide support to the residents and their families by giving them the advice that they need to understand what their rights are. An attorney could help an individual know whether or not what is happening in the nursing home is appropriate, helping them to find appropriate nursing homes in which to reside and, if something goes wrong after all of that, to be there to champion their cause into court.