Often from the onset of bedsores, also described as pressure sores or decubitus ulcers, victims in a hospital or nursing home are led to believe it is their fault. They may be led to believe they don’t have a right to sue and that there is no chance for compensation. It’s simply not true.
Below are some facts about lawsuits and your rights as a patient and victim.
You are able to sue for and recover a monetary award from new injuries and infections and the aggravation of old ones caused by bedsores or pressure ulcers.
The defendants insurance company may ask you for a recorded statement describing the appearance of bedsores and your treatment. Remember you have no obligation to give them such a statement, nor is it wise to do so.
The defendant’s insurance company will ask you for authorizations to obtain your medical records. DON’T DO IT. Let your attorney release your records after he or she has reviewed them. It’s best not to offer information by yourself.
Some insurance companies will offer you money to settle the case before you contact an attorney. In this situation the insurance company knows they will have to pay out money and they hope to settle the claim before you hire an attorney who can negotiate and demand a higher amount. Always consult an attorney if an insurance company is offering you money. By doing so you will in all likelihood increase your net recovery even after taking out the lawyers fee.
Once a bedsore case is settled and the defendant is released, regardless of whether you make a full recovery or not, the money you received cannot be taken away, it is your money…tax free.
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Use our Free Bedsore Lawsuit Evaluator> or feel free to contact me for more information.
Brian A. Raphan, PC email: bedsores@RaphanLaw.com
Nursing home neglect and abuse is often difficult to detect, and families should be on the lookout for common warning signs for physical, emotional and financial abuse.
Common warning signs of physical abuse are:
- Untreated bedsores, pressure sores, wounds, cuts, bruises, or welts
- Abnormally pale complexion
- Bruises in a pattern that would suggest restraints
- Excessive and sudden weight loss
- Fleas, lice, or dirt on or in the room
- Poor personal hygiene, unpleasant odors or other unattended health problems
- Torn clothing or broken personal items
- Bleeding around private parts
- Bloody undergarments
- Bruises around the breast/genital region
- An unexpected look of fear from the elder when aide may be present
Common warning signs of emotional abuse are:
- Intimidation through yelling and threats
- Ignoring the patient
- Isolating the patient from other residents and/or activities
- Terrorizing the patient
- Mocking the patient
Financial exploitation is another form of abuse. An unscrupulous caregiver may:
- Misuse checks, accounts, or credit cards
- Steal money, steal checks, or steal belongings
- Forge signatures
- Authorize withdrawals or transfer of monies
- Steal the patient’s identity
No family is exempt from any of these possibilities. Abuse affects the rich and poor. Suffering sustained by the elderly ranges from financial, to emotional and physical. Abuse escalating to physical can result in severe infections, amputations, dehydration and, unfortunately, death. A lawsuit should be filed on behalf of your loved one to get the justice your family deserves. Compensation may cover the costs of treatment and recovery, as well as compensation for non-financial hardships such as pain and suffering.
If you suspect elder abuse of any kind speak up and demand answers of those in charge.
Feel free to contact me for more information or inquire about a lawsuit.
The National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP) defines a pressure ulcer as a “localized injury to the skin and/or underlying tissue, usually over a bony prominence, as a result of pressure, or pressure in combination with shear.” Illustrations of common locations of pressure ulcers are shown below:
These injuries can lead to further medical problems, infections, sepsis, amputation and even death. Whether malpractice, abuse or neglect it is simply unjust and unnecessary for it to happen to an innocent patient.
Call today for a free consultation to find out the value of a lawsuit or for more information: 212-268-8200, or 800-278-2960
Read more at http://www.BedsoreHotline.com
Stages of Bedsores: