According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, the number of Americans aged 65 and older will account for more than 20 percent of the population by 2040. As these individuals continue to grow older, many will need long-term facilities, such as nursing homes, to provide long-term care. These individuals and their families must understand nursing home resident rights to ensure the resident receives proper care.
The U.S. government has established a common set of guidelines regarding the rights of nursing home residents and the protections they have under the law. Nursing home officials are required to give residents and their families a copy of these rights, and they must display these rights where everyone can see them.
The right to be informed in writing about services and fees before you enter the nursing home.
The right to manage your money or to choose someone else you trust to do this for you.
The right to privacy, and to keep and use your personal belongings and property as long as it does not interfere with the rights, health, or safety of others.
The right to be informed about your medical condition, medications, and to see your doctor. You also have the right to refuse medications and treatments.
The right to have a choice over your schedule (for example, when you get up and go to sleep), your activities and other preferences that are important to you.
The right to an environment more like a home that maximizes your comfort and provides you with assistance to be as independent as possible.
The right to be free of any physical restraint (like side rails) or chemical restraints (like drugs) to discipline you for the staff’s convenience.
Nursing homes must also adhere to civil rights laws that prohibit them from discriminating against anyone based on the following protected classes:
Furthermore, nursing home residents have the right not to be verbally, sexually, physically or mentally abused, and they have the right to complain about any caregiver or staff member without the fear of reprisal.
Take Action Against Nursing Home Abuse
If your loved one is a nursing home patient and you notice common signs of abuse, you should take action right away. Families need to take action against nursing homes where abuse is occurring, because in many instances that abuse will continue if there is no deterrence. There are often feelings of helplessness experienced by the families of nursing home victims, and that’s why hiring a nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer can be such a significant help.
At Miller Kory Rowe LLP, we have established a track record of success when it comes to nursing home abuse claims. Our team of lawyers, investigators and support staff are committed to advocating on behalf of our clients. If you believe you have a nursing home abuse claim, please call us at (602) 737-0342 for a free consultation.