Arizona Elder/Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

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If you have reason to suspect that someone in a nursing home is in life-threatening danger, you should call 911 or your local law enforcement agency immediately. If you suspect abuse is taking place in an Arizona nursing home facility, but don't believe it is a life-threatening situation, you should contact the Arizona Department of Health Services or an elder/nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible to request an investigation.

Nursing home regulations were first initiated in 1965, when the United States federal government approved Medicare and Medicaid payments to nursing home facilities. Since that time, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has overseen nursing homes. The scope of the guidelines and regulations for nursing home operation has been expanded to include defining and addressing elder abuse. Every nursing home in Arizona is subject to those laws.

Abuse of an elder is defined as the willful or reckless act(s) of another person, which may result in physical injury or death of the nursing home resident. This also includes the failure to act to prevent an injury or death, and neglect. If you have witnessed that a nursing home resident has bruises, broken bones, or has experienced a sudden change in physical or mental health, there is strong possibility that abuse is taking place.

Elder/nursing home abuse presents itself in many different forms, and can range from physical, sexual, and psychological abuse to malnutrition, financial exploitation, and pure neglect. If you have made the difficult decision to place a family member in a nursing home, you and your family member shouldn't have to suffer through any type of neglect or abuse at the hands of a caregiver or even other residents.

Sometimes the abuse may simply be the failure to take action to prevent injury or death, such as in cases of neglect. Bruises, broken bones, or a sudden decline or change in physical or mental health, are signs that a resident may be a victim of abuse.

Threats of punishment, humiliation, and harassment have been defined as mental abuse. Additionally, verbal, written or gestured messages that convey a negative or belittling message, even if the patient's mental state or disability prevents comprehension, is considered abusive. A resident may not be prevented from interacting with other residents or having access to his/her room except under brief, monitored circumstances. Restricting a resident's rights in these ways is also deemed within the law to be mental abuse.

A less common problem in nursing homes is the abuse of a resident by another resident. If you or someone you love has experienced this kind of abuse, you should also contact a Arizona civil lawyer or attorney if you are seeking damages outside of the facility.

A loved one may be hesitant or unwilling to speak about these abuses, out of embarrassment or fear of retaliation; you should therefore carefully monitor your loved one and their living environment.

In Arizona, state-required nursing home review is frequently less than adequate. If you suspect that a nursing home or care facility is not working to protect patient rights, it is appropriate to seek out immediate assistance. An elder/nursing home abuse attorney can provide counsel and help to ensure the safety and well-being of your loved one.

If you or someone you love has been abused at the hands of an elder care specialist or a nursing home staff member, contact an Arizona elder/nursing home abuse lawyer to discuss your recourse today. Most of these attorneys will offer a complimentary consultation. You can locate an attorney by visiting the website of the American Bar Association, which has a lawyer locator function in order to assist you in your search.


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