Abuse by Nursing Home Staff Your Experienced, Understanding And Responsive New Mexico Legal Advocates

Our seasoned lawyers have handled thousands of cases and gone up against many negligent nursing homes in an and around Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Abuse by Nursing Home Staff in Albuquerque

Understanding, Results-Oriented Lawyers in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Nursing homes and other long-term care facilities provide a vital service for older adults who need safe, controlled, and monitored environments, especially those with medical conditions that impact their ability to live independently. Ideally, these facilities would be staffed by trained professionals who deeply care about their work. In reality, nursing home staff members are often overworked, underpaid, undertrained, and unmotivated. Consequently, abuse by nursing home staff is a frighteningly frequent occurrence. 

If you believe your loved one has been abused by a member of their nursing home’s staff, turn to the Harvey & Foote Law Firm. Your loved one and your family may be entitled to compensation, and we have a proven track record of securing favorable outcomes for our clients. We understand what is at stake and are committed to helping you get justice.

To learn more about your rights and options after you discover evidence of nursing home abuse, schedule a free initial consultation by contacting us online or calling (505) 295-2245. Se habla español.

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What Are the Common Types of Abuse?

Abuse by nursing home staff refers to any intentional, harmful, or neglectful act committed by caregivers or personnel in a nursing home or long-term care facility against residents. Such abuse can take various forms and can have serious physical, emotional, and psychological consequences for the residents. Here are some common types of abuse by nursing home staff:

  • Physical Abuse:
    • Inflicting physical harm such as hitting, pushing, slapping, or restraining residents excessively.
    • Administering medications improperly or withholding necessary medication.
    • Rough handling during transfers or personal care routines.
  • Emotional or Psychological Abuse:
    • Verbal abuse, including yelling, insulting, or humiliating residents.
    • Intimidation or threats aimed at controlling or manipulating residents.
    • Isolating residents from social interactions or activities.
    • Ignoring residents' emotional needs or belittling their concerns.
  • Financial Exploitation:
    • Misusing a resident's funds, property, or assets for personal gain.
    • Coercing or pressuring residents into signing over financial control or changing wills or beneficiaries.
    • Stealing money or valuables from residents.
  • Neglect:
    • Failure to provide adequate nutrition, hydration, hygiene, or medical care.
    • Ignoring residents' needs for assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs) such as toileting, bathing, or dressing.
    • Ignoring safety hazards within the facility or in residents' living spaces.
  • Sexual Abuse:
    • Any form of non-consensual sexual activity or contact with a resident, including unwanted touching, sexual assault, or rape.
    • Coercion or manipulation into sexual acts through threats or promises.
  • Medication Abuse:
    • Overmedicating residents or administering incorrect dosages.
    • Using medication as a form of control or punishment.
    • Withholding necessary medications or medical treatment.
  • Social and Personal Rights Violations:
    • Restricting residents' freedom of movement or communication without legitimate reasons.
    • Denying residents access to visitors or preventing contact with family and friends.
    • Violating residents' privacy rights, such as by entering their rooms without permission or sharing personal information without consent.

How Common Is Nursing Home Staff Abuse in New Mexico?

Though you are likely aware that nursing home abuse does happen, you may not realize how tragically common it is. Millions of older adults are affected each year, and many instances of abuse are perpetrated by facility staff. You should thus not wave off any evidence that suggests your loved one may be suffering abuse. Keep in mind that abusive staff members sometimes intimidate their victims into silence, so your loved one may not be forthright about what is happening. 

What Are Common Causes of Abuse Perpetrated by Nursing Home Staff in New Mexico?

Many nursing homes are stretched woefully thin. Staff members are expected to do more for less, leading to burnout. This can cause staff members to become angry or resentful toward the people they are meant to be caring for. These dynamics create environments where abuse can happen, and because these types of facilities are already understaffed, there is less of a chance that inappropriate conduct will be detected or that an abusive staff member will be replaced. 

Abuse can also result from a lack of proper background checks. Facilities must make reasonable efforts to ensure that the people they hire are qualified to care for residents. Underqualified staff members, or staff members with disqualifying histories, may be more likely to perpetrate abuse or neglect residents. 

Signs of Nursing Home Staff Abuse

Nursing home abuse perpetrated by staff may be physical, emotional, sexual, or financial. Neglect is also considered a form of abuse. Each type of abuse has warning signs. 

Because many nursing home residents are fearful or uncomfortable about speaking up about abuse, their families will need to recognize signs that something is wrong. This is especially true in cases where a resident is unable to reliably communicate. 

Red flags that may signal abuse by nursing home staff include:

  • Bed sores
  • Malnutrition
  • Poor hygiene
  • Multiple apparent medication errors
  • Unexplained bruises, sprains, or other injuries
  • Unexplained personality changes or other unusual behaviors 
  • Unexplained and unusual financial activity
  • Unsafe or unsanitary living conditions
  • Missing or broken personal property

You should also be wary if a staff member refuses or is reluctant to let you be alone with your loved one. This may be a sign that they are worried your loved one will discuss abusive conduct with you. Remember that you and your loved one have a right to talk in private, so do not be afraid to assert that right, especially if you suspect something is amiss. 

Who Is Responsible for Abuse by Nursing Home Staff in New Mexico?

The perpetrator of the abuse is typically liable for their actions, but they are often not the only responsible party. Nursing homes have a legal obligation to ensure the safety of their residents, including from the actions of abusive staff members. In other words, nursing homes are responsible for performing sufficient background checks when hiring staff. They must also adequately train and monitor staff and take reasonable efforts to proactively prevent harm. Should a nursing home learn about any form of abuse or neglect perpetrated by a staff member, they must take meaningful action to stop the inappropriate conduct, which may include penalizing (or terminating) the abusive staff member and reporting what happened to the appropriate authorities.

In reality, because of financial decisions made by the nursing home owners and operators, nursing home staff members are often overworked, underpaid, undertrained, and unmotivated. Consequently, abuse by nursing home staff is a frighteningly frequent occurrence. 

Our attorneys at the Harvey & Foote Law Firm can help you hold your loved one’s nursing home accountable and will fight to recover compensation for all damages, including:

  • Past, current, and future medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Contact us online or call (505) 295-2245 to discuss your legal options if you have evidence that your loved one has been a victim of staff-on-resident abuse. 

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