Maine Elder/Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

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According the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), there are more than 18,000 nursing homes across America, housing 1.6 million residents. Unfortunately, the National Center on Elder Abuse reports that more than 50% of nursing homes are understaffed, which can lead to chronic stress among staff members who are already dealing with delicate situations on a daily basis. This can lead to elder/nursing home abuse, which occurs in around 30% of all nursing homes across America today.

In Maine in 2008, a 25-year old nursing assistant was found guilty of slapping a stroke victim, swearing at him, and throwing him into a bed. Instances like this show illustrate the vulnerability of nursing home residents.

Elder/nursing home abuse takes many forms, and can include physical, sexual, and psychological abuse, as well as malnutrition, financial exploitation, and neglect. The employees at any nursing home or elder care facility are bound to a professional standard, and it is illegal for them to neglect or abuse any resident at such a facility. If you suspect that someone you love has been abused or mistreated in a Maine nursing home, you should contact a Maine elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney.

All nursing home or elder care facilities have an obligation to protect the rights of every single resident, and to provide an attractive, clean, and healthy environment. They are also obligated to treat residents equally, with no discrimination based on race, religion, color, nationality, ability or source of payment. Nursing home facilities are required by federal law to compose a Nursing Home Resident's Bill of Rights, which they are also required to make available to any resident upon request. The Bill of Rights outlines all policies of the specific nursing home, and each facility must require residents to sign a statement, indicating they have read and understood these rights, before admittance. Specific rights include the right to be informed about one's specific medical condition and treatment, the right to participate in planning one's care and medical treatment, the right to choose a physician, the right to manage personal finances, the right to privacy, dignity, and respect, the right to personal possessions, the right to be free from restraints and abuse in nursing homes, the right to voice grievance without retaliation, the right to be discharged or transferred only for medical reasons, and the rights of access.

Some of the signs of elder abuse may include bruises, broken bones, cuts or lacerations, bedsores, or an abrupt or disturbing change in the behavior or appearance of the resident. The signs of neglect which can include providing insufficient food and water, inadequate attention to hygiene in residents who are not self-sufficient, inadequate medical care, and failure to assist residents who have mobility issues may be harder to recognize, as they are not necessarily as visible as the evidence of physical abuse. Nevertheless, if you suspect that neglect is taking place, you should address your concerns with hospital staff or administration.

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 Maine civil lawyer or attorney if you are seeking damages outside of the facility.

After you contact a Maine elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney, they will schedule a consultation with you in order to evaluate your case. During this consultation they will explain your legal rights in simple terms, and will assess any damages to which you may be entitled. You attorney will have extensive knowledge of Maine's complicated nursing home abuse laws, and will therefore be eminently qualified not only to argue but also to win your case.

If you are ready to contact a Maine elder/nursing home abuse lawyer or attorney, visit the website of the American Bar Association. Use the site's lawyer locator to search for a suitable Maine attorney. Access is free.


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