Iowa Elder/Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

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Recent statistics have shown that Iowa nursing home complaints have risen roughly 35% over the last several years. As a result, Iowa has revoked the licenses of six nursing homes, and roughly several dozen nursing homes are currently facing a denial of Medicaid funding. Fines against nursing homes in the state increased between 2004 and 2005 to $787,000 up 38% from the previous fiscal year. Unfortunately, the situation across the U.S. is just as frightening. The National Center on Elder Abuse reports that elder/nursing home abuse occurs in around 30% of all nursing homes across the United States. In the span of 24 months alone, early on in the new millennium, there were more than 9,000 instances of abuse reported across America.

Elder abuse is a term used to describe mistreatment and neglect of older adults. According to the World Health Organization, elder abuse is a single, or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust which causes harm or distress to an older person.

Elder/nursing home abuse presents itself in many different forms, and can include physical, sexual, and psychological abuse; 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 is simply in 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 Iowa 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 due to embarrassment or fear of retaliation; therefore, you should be sure to monitor both your loved one's physical and emotional state, and the living conditions and environment around the care facility.

Elder abuse also occurs outside of a nursing home setting, where a friend, relative or paid companion or health-care worker commits the abusive act or acts. This may include neglect to the point where an elderly person, who is not self-sufficient, is left alone for long periods of time.

If you suspect that someone you love has been abused or mistreated in a nursing home, or has suffered any type of abuse at the hands of another resident, you should contact a Iowa elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney. You should also contact a Iowa civil lawyer or attorney if you are seeking damages outside of the facility.

An Iowa elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney will offer a free nursing home abuse consultation where they will evaluate your case, explain your legal rights, and assess any damages they feel you are entitled to as a result of abuse or neglect caused by an Iowa nursing home. An Iowa elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney will also be well-versed in Iowa's complicated nursing home abuse laws, so they will be well-equipped to negotiate and win your case.

If you are ready to contact an Iowa elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney, visit the website of the American Bar Association and utilize the site's lawyer locator. Access to the site and the lawyer locater is free.


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