The Scranton nursing home abuse lawyers at Munley Law will fight for your family
The Munley Law firm was founded on the principle of giving voice to the voiceless, and pursuing justice on behalf of the most vulnerable among us. Nursing home residents are often in very vulnerable positions; many suffer from a variety of physical and mental ailments and have become dependent on others to care for them. When a caregiver or facility fails to properly care for your loved one, places them in harm’s way, or subjects them to abuse, we will be their voice. The elder abuse and nursing home neglect attorneys at Munley Law will stand up on behalf of your family and hold the negligent facility accountable.
Scranton has a large elderly population and is home to several nursing home facilities. Unfortunately, nursing home abuse–a specialized kind of elder abuse that occurs in healthcare facilities serving elderly populations–is a rampant problem in the United States. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, over 10% of Americans over the age of 65 suffer this kind of abuse every year. Munley Law has investigated a number of nursing home abuse/neglect complaints against facilities in Scranton and throughout Lackawanna County.
Our Scranton nursing home abuse team is committed to fighting for your loved ones if they are abused or neglected by the people who are responsible for their daily well-being. If you suspect that the staff at a nursing home might be abusing or neglecting its vulnerable elderly residents, don’t wait any longer. Contact our experienced attorneys at Munley Law today for a free consultation. There is no charge to have a lawyer review your loved one’s records and we do not charge a fee for our services unless we win your case.
What Is Nursing Home Abuse?
Nursing home abuse is any kind of harm that is inflicted upon elderly residents who reside in a long-term healthcare facility. The Nursing Home Abuse Center (NHAC) and Nursing Home Abuse Justice (NHAJ) identify five types of nursing home abuse:
- Physical Abuse: Physical abuse occurs when a healthcare facility resident is physically hurt by facility staff or another resident. Examples of common physical abuse include hitting, slapping, punching, striking, biting, kicking, pushing, shoving, and forcefully restraining. Signs of physical nursing home abuse can include broken bones, bruising, scratches, cuts, lacerations, and concussions.
- Emotional, Verbal, and Psychological Abuse: Emotional abuse damages a resident’s psychological or mental health. Examples of this type of abuse include yelling, berating, mocking, confusing, name-calling, threatening, insulting, scaring, manipulating, lying, or forcibly isolating the resident from social interaction and facilities activities. Emotional nursing home abuse can result in anxiety, depressing, damaged self-esteem, and other psychological conditions.
- Financial Nursing Home Abuse: Financial abuse occurs when healthcare facilities staff steal from residents. This often includes the physical taking of money and personal possessions directly from the elderly resident. Financial nursing home abuse also commonly takes the form of staff members forging checks linked to the resident’s account or manipulating residents into voluntarily giving the staff member funds or possessions.
- Sexual Nursing Home Abuse: Sexual abuse is the intentional act of violating a nursing home resident in an unwanted sexual manner. Because many elderly residents are physically incapacitated, they are especially vulnerable to abuse by sexual predators. Sexual abuse can include intercourse, oral intercourse, groping, and unwanted touching. Residents who are victims of sexual abuse can sustain injuries such as lacerations, lesions, broken bones, and bruising, and can also contract sexually transmitted infections. This kind of abuse also causes emotional damage.
- General Neglect: The failure of nursing home staff to properly care for, clean, supervise, and protect residents constitutes abuse by general neglect. Examples of nursing home neglect can include failing to provide sufficient food and water, leaving residents alone for extended periods of time, allowing residents to remain uncleaned after going to the bathroom, improperly or failing to administer medications, failing to maintain clean facilities, declining to report residents’ injuries and complaints to medical staff, physicians, or family members.
When is a nursing home/assisted living facility liable for my loved one’s injury?
Elder care facilities have a duty to provide a safe environment and they must meet certain standards. Failure to uphold that duty or meet those standards can result in harm to their residents and warrant a lawsuit. If your loved one suffers harm at a nursing home, a lawyer who is familiar with nursing home standards and regulations can help determine if the facility was negligent.
Why does nursing home abuse occur?
There is no one cause of nursing home abuse. According to the NHAJ, healthcare facility staff abuse elderly residents for a number of reasons, including:
- Staffing Shortages and Overworked Staff
- Insufficient Pay for Caregivers
- Lack of Training, Experience, and Supervision
- Poor Management
- Lack of Reporting Mechanisms and Accountability for Staff Members Who Abuse Residents
Who Are the Most Vulnerable Residents of Long-Term Healthcare Facilities?
Although any resident of a nursing home or long-term healthcare facility can suffer physical, psychological, financial or sexual abuse, certain elderly populations are especially vulnerable. According to the NHAJ, “residents who are seen as needier, more time-consuming or different in some way from other residents are more likely to be abused or neglected.”
Examples of residents who may be susceptible to abuse because they require more or different care include:
- Residents Who Suffer from Mental Illness
- Residents Who Are Cognitively Impaired
- Residents Who Are Physically Disabled
According to the National Institute of Health (NIH) and the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA), women are also especially likely to be abused. Female residents are perceived to be easier targets than their male counterparts. Because on average, women live longer than men, they spend a longer average amount of time residing a healthcare facility and there are more women in nursing homes.
What Should You Do If You Suspect a Loved One Was the Victim of Nursing Home Abuse?
If someone you love resides in a long-term healthcare facility in Lackawanna County and you suspect that they may be the victim of neglect or physical, emotional, financial, or sexual abuse, call the experienced Scranton nursing home abuse lawyers at Munley Law for a free consultation today. For over 60 years, our lawyers have fought for victims of abuse and their families.
We work closely with an on-staff doctor to review your loved one’s medical records and obtain any relevant documentation and evidence from the nursing home facility itself. With decades of experience with these types of cases, we know how to investigate the claim and build your case. Our robust track record reflects a long history of winning justice for our clients. While no amount of compensation will erase the harm done to your loved one, a proper settlement will allow you to recover your financial losses, force the negligent party to take responsibility, and send a strong message that elder abuse shall not be tolerated.
The personal injury and nursing home abuse lawyers at Munley Law in Scranton have earned national recognition for their legal victories and client service. Each of our partners has been listed in “Best Lawyers in America;” Munley Law has consistently been featured among Pennsylvania Super Lawyers; and Marion and Daniel Munley were recently the only lawyers in the Scranton area named to the Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers list.