Q: My loved one was recently placed in a nursing home. What are some signs of abuse to be aware of?
A: Common examples of nursing home abuse or neglect include
- Heavy medication or sedation
- Rapid weight loss or weight gain without physician or family notification and a change in treatment being provided
- Unexplained or unexpected injuries or death of the resident
- Resident is frequently ill, and the illnesses are not promptly reported to the physician and family
- Failure to prevent dehydration, malnutrition, and bed sores
- Unsanitary and unclean conditions
- Unreasonable physical restraint
- Open wounds, cuts, bruises or welts
Q: What is a nursing home negligence claim?
A: A nursing home negligence case is when you or a loved are injured as a result of medical malpractice or abuse in a nursing home. Malpractice occurs when a medical provider (doctor, nurse, therapist, etc.) causes harm to a patient as a result of a breach of the standard of care. A breach of the standard of care can occur in a number of ways. For example, if a doctor fails to provide treatment that should be given that can be a breach of the standard of care. Or if a treatment is provided but done wrong that can also be a breach of the standard of care. Virginia law generally requires the testimony of a medical expert to determine if the standard of care was breached.
Q: What damages are recoverable in a nursing home case?
A: Recoverable damages can include compensation for medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering, and mental anguish.
Q: Are there time limitations or deadlines for a nursing home abuse or negligence claim?
A: The statute of limitations in Virginia for personal injury is two years. Generally, this means that you have two years from the date the abuse or negligence occurs to settle your claim or file a lawsuit. There are very limited circumstances in which you may have more than two years. (For example, if you were a minor when the malpractice occurred). You should always talk to an attorney to determine the applicable statute of limitations on your case.