Deaths from Nursing Home Neglect Surge During the Pandemic

January 8, 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases have soared across nursing homes in the United States. Yet, residents of long-term health care facilities, nursing homes, and related places are at risk of an outbreak and other dangers. Recent reports suggest that many nursing home deaths were caused by neglect, not COVID-19. Many families believe that their elderly relatives were mistreated prior to dying. Some of the nursing home abuse stems from understaffing.

Common types of neglect include malnourishment, overmedication and undermedication, and failing to report incidents, such as falls. An early death precipitated by sepsis, malnutrition, dehydration, or a host of other ailments are linked to neglect. Many concerned families also believe that their spouses, parents, and grandparents died partially from the psychological trauma of extreme isolation.

Why are Nursing Home Staff Members Potentially Neglecting Some Residents?

What causes this type of neglect during the pandemic? Many experts suggest that the problem stems from underprepared nursing homes. For instance, a nursing home with minimal staff cannot tend to all patients. Some outside family members and visitors have picked up some of the slack by feeding relatives, dressing them, or helping with certain hygiene.

How are Family Members Dealing with Nursing Home Neglect During the Pandemic?

Many families want justice; however, it can be difficult for them to prove neglect. Plenty of angry, confused, and hurt family members are looking for the truth, and they are facing challenges, such as obtaining necessary documents. If a family member is concerned about ongoing abuse, or if their loved one died of neglect, they should contact a lawyer.

A lawyer will hold nursing home staff accountable for mistreatment. A lawyer is able to obtain necessary information to prove abuse and neglect. A legal professional knows how to work within the court system to compel entities, like nursing homes, to provide data for analysis. This takes the burden off the shoulders of grieving family members. It also helps move a case along without missing deadlines.

How Do I Know if I Have a Nursing Home Neglect Case?

Family members who suspect that their loved one is being neglected, or may have died from abuse, should try to obtain personal evidence. Dated photographs of a deteriorated resident can show a pattern of neglect or abuse. If a resident required emergency medical treatment outside the nursing home, a doctor’s report on the resident’s previous condition could be vital. These items can be leveraged in court if they point to possible abuse and neglect.

Delaware County Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Help Abused Nursing Home Residents and Their Families

Do you suspect that your relative is suffering from nursing home abuse or neglect during the pandemic? Our Delaware County nursing home neglect lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. can help you with your case. Call us at 610-565-3701 or contact us online for a free consultation today. Located in Media and West Chester, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Delaware County, Chester County, and Montgomery County.