As our loved ones age, it can sometimes become difficult to provide them with the care they need—especially if they have diagnosed medical conditions. Depending on the situation, it could be necessary to transition them to a skilled nursing facility.
Nursing homes are supposed to provide their residents with the care they need to live as high a quality of life as possible. Unfortunately, that doesn’t always happen. If your loved one has been mistreated in their long-term care facility, an Evanston nursing home abuse lawyer from Thomas Law Offices can help.
At Thomas Law Offices, we’re dedicated to helping victims of nursing home abuse. If you are planning on filing an injury claim on behalf of your loved one, we’ll make sure you understand your legal rights and options and what you need to do to recover the compensation your family member needs to heal and find a better, safer facility.
Long-Term Care Facilities in Evanston
If you live in or around Evanston and are looking for a nursing home for your loved one, it’s likely you’re going to look nearby. The following five facilities are within city limits:
- Aperion Care Evanston
- The Mather Evanston
- The Grove of Evanston L & R
- Symphony Evanston Healthcare
- Dobson Plaza
According to the Medicare Nursing Home Compare tool, the facilities listed above all have above average or much above average ratings. While this is a good sign if you’re in the process of choosing a nursing home in Evanston, it does not guarantee your loved one will receive the care they are entitled to. In order to understand how your loved one should be treated in their long-term care facility, let’s take a look at the state nursing home laws.
Nursing Home Laws in Illinois
Every state outlines rights for its nursing home residents. The Illinois Nursing Home Care Act is a state statute that details the requirements for nursing homes, including the following:
- Residents are not to be deprived of any rights, benefits, or privileges that are guaranteed by state law or under the U.S. Constitution.
- All new residents are to be informed of their rights under the Illinois Public Aid Code and the Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Act.
- Residents are allowed to manage their own financial affairs unless under guardianship.
- Residents can wear or use personal property unless medically inappropriate.
- Residents should have access to adequate storage for their personal property and a secure area to store smaller valuable items.
- Residents are allowed to keep their personal physicians.
- Nursing homes are not allowed to perform any research or experimental treatment on residents or allow access to residents’ medical records for studies without prior written approval.
- All medical treatments need to be done under the supervision and orders of a physician.
- Residents have the right to refuse medical treatment.
- Residents should not be physically or chemically restrained for punishment or convenience of the staff.
- Residents should not be given unnecessary drugs.
- Residents should never be abused or neglected.
In the event you believe your loved one’s rights have been violated in the form of abuse or neglect, you’ll want to be able to identify the difference between the two so you can take the proper actions to protect your loved one.
Neglect vs. Abuse in Nursing Homes
While you may hear the terms nursing home abuse and neglect used interchangeably, the concepts are not the same. Abuse is the intentional infliction of harm, while neglect refers to the failure to provide the necessary care for an individual, resulting in injury.
Nursing home abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual, or financial. As a result, a resident may sustain injuries like bruises, welts, or lacerations. Emotionally, a resident may become withdrawn or experience depression or anxiety. If a resident is being financially exploited, you may notice missing property or see unexplained changes to bank accounts.
Neglect is often the result of a facility being understaffed. If there are not enough employees to care for residents, they may go a long time without the care they need. As a result, they may suffer from dehydration, malnourishment, or bed sores.
The moment you suspect abuse or neglect, you have the right to file a report. If you do, an investigation will be conducted, and the state will determine if the nursing home facility has violated state or federal law.
Contact Thomas Law Offices
If your loved one has been neglected or abused in their nursing home, it’s important to file a report with the state and get in touch with an Evanston nursing home abuse lawyer. At Thomas Law Offices, we understand how devastating it can be to learn your loved one has been mistreated, and we have the resources to help you stand up for their rights and help them recover as fully as possible.
When you file a nursing home abuse claim, we will go through the claims process to hold the facility accountable for its actions or inactions. While most claims settle through negotiations, there is a chance you will need to pursue a lawsuit to get the compensation your loved one needs and deserves.
It’s important to note that filing a claim is a lengthy process, so the sooner you get started, the better. If you’re ready to learn how you can help your loved one get their life back in order, schedule a case evaluation with our law firm today.