Choosing a Nursing Home With A Nursing Home Attorney St. Petersburg FL

woman with cane  Nursing Home Attorney St. Petersburg FLYour nursing home attorney St. Petersburg FL can assist you with taking the right steps to select the proper nursing home.

A Nursing Home Attorney St. Petersburg FL Can Help When Comparing Facilities

When you have come to the decision that a nursing home is needed, the obvious first question will be, “Which nursing home will give me the care I am looking for and is at a price I can afford?” A nursing home attorney St. Petersburg FL can help with the research. There are many regulations Congress requires a nursing home to meet – more than 150 – prior to being certified under Medicare or Medicaid. The regulations can vary from food storage to how abuse is prevented. You should go and take a tour before coming to a decision. When you first plan to visit a nursing home, make an appointment. You should also think about paying an unannounced visit. The majority of well-regarded nursing homes will not have a problem with you visiting them unannounced. It is at an unannounced visit when you should look for worrisome signs.

Your Nursing Home Attorney St. Petersburg FL Will Advise You on Questions You Should Ask

When you visit, there is nothing wrong with asking questions. The administrators of the facility should want you to be comfortable with the decision you make. Bear in mind special conditions your loved one has that will require extra care. Also make sure to have the fees and policies of the home in writing.

Ask the Following Basic Questions

Staff

  1. How many employees do you have?
  2. What is their training and qualifications?
  3. Do you have regular staff members caring for the residents on a daily basis?
  4. Do they speak the same language and is an interpreter available if needed?

Safety

  1. Does the nursing home have a state license?
  2. Is the facility certified by Medicare and Medicaid?
  3. Were there any problems in the last inspection?
  4. Did the facility pass the fire inspections?
  5. Will the doors be locked at a certain time every night?
  6. Will the personal belongings of the residents be safe?
  7. Will the residents be required to get various vaccinations such as the flu shot?

Quality of Life Issues

  1. Does the nursing home offer activities for the residents and will there be religious observances?
  2. Do the residents decide when they go to bed, bathe, and eat their meals?
  3. Are visitors allowed at any time or only during designated periods? Are the residents allowed to see their own doctors?
  4. Can the residents leave the facility when they choose to?
  5. Will transportation be provided?
  6. Are there certain policies that the residents must follow?

Expenses

  1. How much will it cost to be a resident in the nursing home?
  2. Are there certain basic services that go with the initial fee?
  3. Will there be extra costs?
  4. Are there currently beds available or is there a waiting list?

Call an Experienced Nursing Home Attorney St. Petersburg FL

If you have concerns about a nursing home, call (727) 895-5399 to speak to a nursing home attorney St. Petersburg FL at Giroux & Associates Inc.

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Our Florida Nursing Home Lawyer Addresses Case Damages

law book and gavel Florida Nursing Home Lawyer Clients sometimes ask our Florida nursing home lawyer how we determine damages in a nursing home case. While the courts will review each situation on an individual basis, a key consideration is advanced plaintiff age. The defense might allege that the plaintiff suffered from prior injuries or health issues and already faced a short life expectancy. An additional challenge is that the case generally does not include lost earnings or significant medical expenses unless the plaintiff sustains a broken bone or serious injury.

Quality of Care

The main point of the case is to emphasize the importance of professional care even if your loved one did not stay at the nursing home for long. If your loved one had a brief life expectancy, those days should be lived as comfortably as possible without humility or suffering. Our loved ones and the elderly should be afforded the consideration of dignity during their last days. Our Florida nursing home lawyer will find ways to show the worth of each day for your family member. In some cases, you will have witnesses, including other staff members, family members, other patients or friends, who will help support your version of events. If there are no witnesses, your case might be difficult to prove. However, our Florida nursing home lawyer might have suggestions on how to mount a solid defense.

Enjoying Life’s Small Pleasures

A nursing home resident values the smallest enjoyments that others take for granted. Little events, such as sleeping in comfort, conversations with friends, exercise, enjoying the outdoors, petting their animal and even eating a special meal might be the focus of your family member. They will no longer attend sporting events, go out of town on a spontaneous weekend or eat a leisurely meal at an upscale restaurant. Your lawyer will work to show the importance of life’s small pleasures to your family member and will seek appropriate compensation.

Contact Our Florida Nursing Home Lawyer

Call our Florida nursing home lawyer at Giroux & Associates Inc. at (727) 895-5399 for help with determining damages in your case.

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A Florida Nursing Home Abuse Attorney on Selecting a Nursing Home

gavel Florida Nursing Home Abuse AttorneyThe decision to place a loved one in a nursing home is among the most difficult you will face in your lifetime. Lately, nursing home abuse has become all but epidemic. According to research published by the National Center on Elder Abuse, Bureau of Justice Statistics, 91 percent of nursing homes lack enough stuff to care for the number of residents they house and 36 percent of nursing homes have violated against elder abuse laws.

Face the Facts

“You get what you pay for,” is a stark reality of the nursing home business; consequently, most of us are unable to afford an elite care facility. Although an exorbitant monthly fee does not guarantee there will be no problems, the price does bring a high-degree of accountability and very likely a better trained staff with a lower care provider to resident ration. However, a Florida nursing home abuse attorney will emphasize that you can be proactive in learning as much as you can about your choices.

Do Your Homework

Investigate the facility you are considering. Do they have a history of government complaints? Visit the home; do the residents seem content, well-cared for and engaging? Do you know someone who resides in a local facility? As with many services, a referral is a great way to gain first-hand knowledge and the ins and outs of a nursing home.

Consider Alternatives

Ultimately, your loved one’s physical and mental condition will for the most part dictate your options, but a nursing home may not be an absolute necessity, at least not just yet. Among the options a Florida nursing home abuse attorney can recommend includes:

An assisted living facility: Similar to a nursing home, but less restrictive, assisted care living allows the resident to have his or her own room and the ability to join in communal activities, such as dining and recreation. Many assisted living facilities also have nursing home options on the same premises, which can make a transition, if subsequently necessary, much smoother.

Board and care group homes: These living arrangements are much like assisted living but much smaller, often in a converted residential home.

Community service options: Some individuals can safely remain in their own home for an extended period of time with a little help. Meals on wheels and other senior care programs can be utilized in conjunction with a team effort by family and friends.

Contact a Florida Nursing Home Abuse Attorney for Legal Advice

Our aging elders are among the most vulnerable among us. They have the right to live their lives with dignity, respect and in safety. If you need a dedicated advocate to act on behalf of your loved one, call Peter Giroux, a Florida nursing home abuse attorney, at (727) 895-5399.

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Nursing Home Case Attorneys in St Petersburg Explain How Common Nursing Home Abuse Is

file stethoscope Nursing Home Case Attorneys in St PetersburgA nursing home case attorney in St Petersburg says there are more than a million elderly residents in nursing homes. As the American population ages, this number will increase constantly. Nursing home residents are a uniquely vulnerable group dependent on others for their needs. They deserve a level of care that preserves their dignity and well-being.

Unfortunately, adds the nursing home case attorney in St Petersburg, the problem of elder abuse plagues many of them. It’s impossible to say exactly how common the problem is because it is so underreported. By one estimate, only one in 14 incidents of elder abuse and one in 25 of financial exploitation come to the attention of authorities.

The National Research Council estimates that between one and two million Americans age 65 or older have been injured, exploited, or otherwise mistreated by someone on whom they have depended for care or protection. A 2001 government study found 31 percent of nursing homes cited for abuse violations. Thirty percent of those cited were for violations that caused actual harm to residents or placed them in immediate danger of serious injury or death.

Reasons for Nursing Home Abuse

The most common reason for nursing home abuse is insufficient staffing. More than 90 percent of all nursing homes are for-profit businesses. Minimizing employee salaries is a way for businesses to boost bottom lines, but when nursing homes boost theirs in this way they deprive residents of basic human rights.

Fewer than half of nursing homes have adequate staffing because, in the opinion of the nursing home case attorney in St Petersburg, they pay employees outrageously low wages, sometimes less than those of fast-food workers. Many nursing homes rely on untrained, uneducated personnel for jobs that nurses or nursing assistants should do.

Types of Abuse

Elder abuse in nursing homes can take many forms:

  • Physical abuse as pain or injury from willfully inflicted beatings, sexual assaults, unreasonable restraints, and deprivation of food or water.
  • Psychological and emotional abuse from willful infliction of mental suffering by verbal assaults, threats, humiliation, and intimidation.
  • Neglect to provide reasonable care assisting in personal hygiene, medical attention, and protection from health and safety hazards.

Nobody should assume that nursing home residents will report and complain about mistreatment. Many are reluctant for various reasons to blow their whistles. Always be alert for signs of nursing home abuse or neglect.

Contact Nursing Home Case Attorneys in St Petersburg

Giroux & Associates Inc limits legal practice to cases against nursing homes and hospitals that neglect or abuse their residents. Florida law requires claims against nursing home and hospital within a specific period of time after the injury from abuse or neglect occurs, a time limit under the state statute of limitations. For this reason, it is important to contact a skilled, experienced, specialized nursing home case attorney in St Petersburg for a free consultation and case evaluation as quickly as possible after the discovery of the injury. Call Giroux & Associates Inc at (727) 895-5399.

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A Pinellas County Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Answers Why Nursing Home Abuse Happens

Pinellas County Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Patient in hospital bedUnfortunately, a Pinellas County nursing home abuse attorney is all too familiar with the various reasons why nursing home abuse occurs. For most people, the thought of abusing the vulnerable is unfathomable. However, a Pinellas County nursing home abuse attorney how common this problem continues to be and the reasons that lead to it.

Intentional Conduct

Some “caregivers” pursue this line of work so that they will be surrounded by vulnerable people who often lack the ability to tell loved ones what is going on. This is particularly true for caregivers who intend to financially abuse the elderly. However, A Pinellas County nursing home abuse attorney can explain that this situation is in the minority. More often, nursing home neglect is an unintentional act.

Under-staffing

A Pinellas County nursing home abuse attorney can explain that most nursing homes are run as for-profit businesses. As such, administration may under-staff the homes in order to increase their profits. Additionally, staffing such homes may be difficult due to low wages and hard working conditions. In some cases, nursing home workers may take out their frustrations unwittingly on the residents.

Lack of Qualifications

In some cases, the nursing home worker may be under-qualified for the job. He or she may not know how to properly handle certain situations due to lack of proper education or training. In the rare instance in which a nursing home patient is attempting to provoke the worker, it is important that he or she knows how to handle the situation.

Frustration with Medical Conditions

Nursing home workers may lack the understanding to properly sympathize with nursing home patients. Some workers may believe that patients are intentionally making their jobs harder when they are simply suffering from a medical condition.

Legal Assistance from Our Pinellas County Nursing Home Abuse Attorney

For more information on nursing home neglect, contact a Pinellas County nursing home abuse attorney from Giroux & Associates Inc. by calling (727) 895-5399.

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St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Describes Common Defenses Used in Negligence Cases

St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse LawyerEffectively dealing with a negligent nursing home that has harmed a loved one requires assistance from a St. Petersburg nursing home abuse lawyer who has extensive knowledge of how extended care facilities operate. When nursing homes are subjected to civil lawsuits for jeopardizing the well-being and safety of their residents, they assert certain defenses to protect themselves.

Common Defense Tactics Used by Nursing Homes

Negligence occurs when the nursing home breached a duty of care that was owed to the resident; the resident is harmed or injured; and the conduct of the nursing home employees caused the injury. The nursing home will present defenses that either prove that it wasn’t negligent or that its negligence didn’t result in harm to the resident. Some of the defenses used by nursing homes include:

  • Challenging the treating physician and claiming he committed medical errors or failed to act appropriately based on the circumstances.
  • The plaintiff’s injuries were caused by pre-existing health conditions or medical complications instead of the actions of the staff at the nursing care facility.
  • Dispute the testimony of the plaintiff’s expert witnesses by focusing on flaws in their analysis, exposing any bias they may have or getting them to agree that the nursing home’s negligence may not have been the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries.
  • The statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit has expired. If you don’t initiate litigation within a certain timeframe after the injury has occurred or has been discovered, you lose the right to seek compensation for the injuries and damages you sustained.

There are several legal theories and strategies that can be used when representing a person who has been harmed as a result of negligent care. When nursing homes have understaffed facilities and employ people who aren’t adequately trained, there is a greater risk that they won’t meet the minimum standard of care required by state laws. An experienced St. Petersburg nursing home abuse lawyer can assess the merits of a negligence claim and discuss any concerns you have regarding a loved one.

Contact a St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

Giroux & Associates, Inc. is dedicated to helping people who have been victims of neglect and abuse in nursing homes. Call us at (727) 895-5399 to schedule a consultation with a St. Petersburg nursing home abuse lawyer.

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How a St. Petersburg Elderly Abuse and Neglect Attorney Can Help

elderly hands St. Petersburg Elderly Abuse and Neglect Attorney If you or your loved one is an elder and not being treated properly, a St. Petersburg elderly abuse and neglect attorney may be able to help you. In nursing home cases, one common theme the plaintiff’s attorney may use is the defendant’s corporate greed evidenced by under-staffing to maximize profits. In most cases, the plaintiff’s attorney will choose to focus on the nursing home’s managing agents instead of the nurses and other employees.

Who Is Responsible

These managing agents can often be held responsible for causing the plaintiff’s damages. The nurses involved in the care of the plaintiff are often viewed as being victims of corporate greed themselves. The plaintiff is often believed to have been injured or neglected as the result of the poor policies and practices of corporate management. For example, even if a nurse forges medical records, the plaintiff’s attorney will tell the jurors if it was the nursing home’s policy to allow or encourage this type of behavior. The St. Petersburg elderly abuse and neglect attorney will most likely make the point that the management was aware of it or should have known that nurses engaged in this behavior.

Discussing the Profit Motive and Humanizing the Elder

During the opening statement, your attorney or the plaintiff’s attorney may discuss the corporation’s profit motive and point out that the corporation sacrificed patient safety and care for financial gain. The opening statement should put a strong emphasis on the defendant’s inability or failure to create and enforce policies that would protect the elderly. It is also important for the abused elder to be humanized. The elder may be deceased when it comes time to have the trial. Videos, photographs, and testimony from family members may help the jurors understand the gravity of the situation.

Contact a St. Petersburg Elderly Abuse and Neglect Attorney

For more information on how a St. Petersburg elderly abuse and neglect attorney can help you, contact Giroux & Associates Inc at (727) 895-5399.

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Our St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Offers Tips on Your Case

St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Man having a neck painIf your loved one has suffered mistreatment in an assisted living or similar facility, our St. Petersburg nursing home abuse attorney can provide needed counsel and offer suggestions on how to increase the value of your case. Obtaining the appropriate records is one way to back up your claims.

Incident Documentation

According to the law, nursing homes must document injuries, accidents and similar incidents. However, these reports might not be included in your loved one’s file, so you will need to specifically ask for them.

Additional Records

You might be able to find these records by asking the following departments:

  • Business records, including budgets, incidents, and thefts
  • Nursing logs, including schedules, assignments and patient updates
  • Dietary information, including workers’ schedules, menus, and nutritional information
  • Environmental services, including cleaning schedules, worker assignments, and laundry
  • Maintenance, including repair requests, water temperature information, and preventative maintenance
  • Rehabilitation, including cautions regarding falls or accidents, and physical therapy information
  • Social services department, including family notes and required Medicare/Medicaid documents that need to be submitted four times per year.

Our St. Petersburg nursing home abuse attorneys can suggest other records that could substantiate your lawsuit.

Laboratory Tests

Laboratory tests, such as sodium tests, blood urea nitrogen tests, urinalysis tests, white blood cell count tests, and others provide additional documentation regarding the status of the nursing home. For example, your loved one might have suffered from a serious yet untreated ailment detected through these tests. Our St. Petersburg nursing home abuse attorney understands the relevance of lab work and how it can affect your case.

Nursing Home Personnel Records

The nursing home will resist the release of personnel records and cite privilege and confidentiality in their defense. Our lawyers will work to show a clear connection between your loved one, the incident in question, and the employee’s records. However, you might need a court order before the nursing home complies as they will likely not want to hand over this critical information.

Contact Our St. Petersburg Nursing Home Abuse Attorney

For help with your case, call the St. Petersburg nursing home abuse attorneys at the law firm of Giroux & Associates Inc. at (727) 895-5399.

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Tampa Nursing Home Negligence Attorney Explains More Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

elderly woman Tampa Nursing Home Negligence AttorneyNursing home abuse can take many different forms as our Tampa nursing home negligence attorney can tell you. If you suspect that a friend or loved one in a nursing home is experiencing some form of nursing home abuse, a nursing home abuse attorney may be able to help.

Medical Negligence

Some nursing homes unfortunately employ staff who are not adequately trained or educated due to financial restrictions. If these employees are tasked with feeding and changing residents or keeping them hydrated and comfortable throughout the night, the level of care may be substandard. Even worse, underqualified staff members can sometimes be tasked with dispensing medication to residents, where errors can be fatal. If medical errors are apparent, it may be important to determine the name and qualifications of the employee in charge of medication and their supervisors.

Inaccurate Records

Like all medical facilities, nursing homes are required to keep and maintain adequate medical records for their patients. However some nursing homes are negligent or lax in this, and records may contain errors and mistakes. In a case involving inaccurate records, your Tampa nursing home negligence attorney will need to look through all relevant records to see if something is inaccurate.

Pressure Sores

An extremely common medical condition facing anyone who is bedridden for extended periods of time is “pressure sores,” also known as decubitus ulcers. They occur to parts of the body that experience unrelieved pressure and can result in severe damage. Bedridden patients should be repositioned at least every two hours to prevent pressure sores from developing and to keep blood circulating through all parts of the body, but some homes are negligent in ensuring this. If a patient is exhibiting signs of pressure sores, it may be important for your attorney to examine the care practices of the home.

Contact a Tampa Nursing Home Negligence Attorney

A Tampa nursing home negligence attorney can help. For more information on what to do if you suspect nursing home abuse or neglect, contact a Tampa nursing home negligence attorney at Giroux & Associates Inc. Call (727) 895-5399.

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Florida Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Discusses Lawsuit Value

Florida Nursing Home Abuse Attorney Judges gavel and law booksA Florida nursing home abuse attorney may be able to help you if you have reason to believe that your loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse. The value of a standard nursing home abuse case is largely dependent upon awards given in past cases, how the abuse occurred, the extent of the injuries sustained, the likelihood of future suffering, and both current and future medical expenses. Some awards have reached the millions in cases where the abuse the nursing home resident suffered was particularly horrific. Most settlements are catastrophic, so it can still be difficult to determine the average amount awarded in such cases.

State Variations

The state in which you file a lawsuit may play a significant role when it comes to how much you receive. Some states have laws that mandate proper nursing home care. Such laws may make it easier for punitive damages to be awarded once a statute has been violated. Some states will recover attorneys’ fees for winning claimants, making it easier to decide whether filing is worth the cost.

Nursing Home Settlements

Litigation is often a long and difficult process to navigate, so it is common for plaintiffs to accept a settlement. Lawsuits are costly and time-consuming, requiring paid medical experts, depositions of medical staff at the facility, and extensive review of medical records. It is often challenging to prove that a nursing home’s staff acted in such a way that led to the death or injury of a patient. For this reason, Tampa nursing home attorneys may advise clients to settle if that is the more financially and emotionally beneficial option.

Medicare or Medicaid Deductions

In most cases, nursing home care is significantly covered by Medicare or Medicaid. Both programs place a lien of $100,000 or more against the damages recovered by any lawsuit. This means that even if you are successful, you may not receive a significant portion of the damages. Tampa nursing home attorneys may be able to help advise you as to whether the amount that is likely to be deducted from your winning damages makes it worth filing or not.

Contact a Florida Nursing Home Abuse Attorney

If you believe that your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse, contact Giroux & Associates Inc today at (727) 895-5399 for more information on filing a successful claim. A nursing home attorney may be able to provide valuable guidance about whether it is in your best interest to file a lawsuit, accept a settlement or appeal a decision that was made. The right Florida nursing home abuse attorney may be able to provide you with the representation and experience you need to file a successful lawsuit against a nursing facility.

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