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Experienced. Trusted. Respected. Enforcing the Safety Rules that Protect Us All

Elder and Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers

Protecting Elders, Seniors & Vulnerable PopulationsNursing home

Over three million elderly citizens live in a nursing home or assisted living. Seniors are the largest growing segment of the population; they must be able to depend on nursing homes or care facilities. Sweetser Law Office believes elders deserve quality care which addresses their medical needs and protects them from needless injuries.

Sweetser Law Office is committed to providing the necessary dedication and experience to tackle challenging elder and nursing home abuse cases. Our elder law attorneys are trained to investigate, identify, and hold offending institutions accountable when they fail to live up to the promises in their glossy brochures. If you suspect that you or a loved has experienced any form of elder abuse or neglect we urge you to contact our office immediately to speak with a Spokane elder abuse attorney at Sweetser Law Office. If no action is taken to stop maltreatment of elders, seniors, and vulnerable populations the abuse will not be prevented.

Holding Caregivers Responsible for Their Abuse

If you have noticed any of these signs with your loved one, now is the time to act. While you should never jump to conclusions immediately, any indication of potential abuse should always be taken seriously and investigated further. Our Spokane elder abuse lawyer can help with the investigatory process and, if abuse is found, fight to hold the caregiver or company accountable for their negligence. If you have identified clear signs of abuse, we urge you to get legal help immediately!

Call us today at (509) 444-4444 for the counsel and support you need.

Elder Neglect and Abuse Is Systemic, and Too Often Unreported

Elder and nursing home abuse is a systemic national problem. Nationwide studies reveal 1 in 3 facilities have committed elder neglect or abuse. Nearly half of elderly residents in nursing facilities experience a serious fall each year (ten percent resulting in death or debilitating injury).

Ninety-five percent of long-term care residents identify themselves as either victims or witnesses to neglect or abuse:

  • A 2001 U.S. House of Representative Report found 1 out of every 3 U.S. nursing homes had been cited for violating federal standards that caused harm or had the potential to cause actual harm to an elder resident.
  • The Center of Disease Control and Prevention estimates approximately 1,800 patients die each year as result of nursing home falls.
  • 250,000 senior nursing home residents are reported to suffer from bedsores every year
  • The World Health Organization has declared "Elder Abuse a violation of basic human rights," citing it as a significant cause of injury, illness, loss of productivity, despair, and isolation.

Older couple sitting by a pondThe reality is elderly facilities are usually run by large corporations concerned more with money, and government compensation rates, than the care they provide. The facilities neglect dim lighting, slippery wet floors, misbalanced beds, and faulty mobility devices. Elder facilities are often reported to be understaffed, hiring new staff without proper screening or training, and without adequate supervision. As a result these facilities are providing poor care that endangers senior resident’s health and well-being in their golden years.

One of the most devastating crimes is the sexual abuse of an elder victim who cannot defend himself or herself. Sexually abusing an elder is unthinkable to most people, but during our years of experience we have come across a large number of disturbing incidents where a person familiar with the victim commits a heinous act of sexual abuse at a skilled nursing facility or as an in-home care provider.

Too often vulnerable seniors are effectively voiceless, and the most egregious cases go unreported. Elder care residents find themselves trapped and unable to communicate incidents of abuse, and loved ones are usually not familiar with the recognizable signs of abuse or neglect. When you begin to factor in how many cases are going unreported every year, the elder abuse statistics in this country are particularly frightening.

Call the Spokane elder and nursing home abuse lawyers at (509) 444-4444, the Sweetser Law Office offers the representation your loved ones need.

How to Identify Elder Care or Nursing Home Abuse

Elders in hospitals, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities or those under in-home care can suffer many different kinds of abuse or neglect. However, certain recognizable signs and injuries can indicate a repeated pattern or failure to provide the basic care required.

Such care includes:

  • Poor hygiene or worn clothing
  • Complaints of poor living conditions
  • Malnutrition, dehydration, or infection
  • Deteriorating health
  • Bedsores, pressure sores, or burns
  • Failing to provide medical care
  • Falls, fractures, broken or dislocated bones
  • Bruising or rashes
  • Unexplained behavioral changes or loss of appetite
  • Sudden depression or urge to be isolated
  • Blank stares, rocking, biting, sucking or prolonged confusion
  • Pain, itching, or bleeding in genital areas
  • Physical discomfort walking or sitting
  • Overmedication or sedation
  • Missing property or finances

Families with elderly loved ones are often told to have low expectations regarding the condition or care of their elder’s health. “We cannot force dad to eat,” they are told, “falls are bound to happen,” and “pneumonia is very common.” In far too many cases, poor care is contributing to an elderly loved one’s condition or death.

All facilities caring for elders or vulnerable populations are required to report abuse, senior neglect, nursing home negligence, and wrongful death claims. Additionally, all states have both local and federal agencies available to investigate incidents of elder or nursing home abuse. Visit the National Center of Elder Abuse for more valuable information, including state resources and regional Ombudsmen.

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