Medical Neglect

The Maine medical neglect attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates have an established reputation for excellence in personal injury law. We have recovered seven-figure settlements for patients injured by the negligence of others. Our office provides dedicated and caring representation to victims of nursing home abuse throughout Maine.

According to U.S. News and World Report, the U.S. is not doing enough to provide care for the elderly. With mounting reports of elder abuse and financial fraud committed by nursing homes and their staff, it is no wonder that we lag behind some third-world countries in taking care of our elders. These statistics should be shocking to a nation that prides itself on being one of the world’s leading health care providers. For the elderly, this provision of medical care has been found to be seriously lacking. The abuse and neglect common to elderly patients today does not bode well for future generations that will require the same, if not more, care. It is incumbent upon us to solve issues of medical neglect and other forms of abuse before we become its victims.

Nursing homes often fail to provide for their patients’ basic medical needs. Medical neglect can refer to anything from instances of malpractice and physical abuse to preventable mistakes that endanger the patient. Because nursing homes cater to senior patients, they should expect to provide the medical treatment appropriate for a population of that age. While it is not always the case, patients tend to experience more medical conditions and take more medication as they age.

Nursing home facilities are responsible for ensuring that each patient receives the treatment and medication prescribed. This may involve administering eye drops and diabetes medication three times a day, or changing the patient’s diet and catheters to ensure proper treatment. Most importantly, medical attention means observing the patient’s condition to prevent a rapid decline.

Examples of medical neglect include:

  • Inadequate monitoring
  • Over or under-medicating
  • Failure to diagnose illness
  • Fabrications in patient chart
  • Untimely transfer to hospital
  • Incorrect dose or prescription
  • Dilatory response to infection
  • Incorrect treatment of condition
  • Failure to respond to severe distress

Federal and state laws protect nursing home patients injured by medical neglect or elder abuse. Maine law specifically distinguishes between skilled nursing facilities, residential care facilities, and private non-medical institutions. Nursing homes are held to the highest standard of care. These facilities must operate jointly with a hospital and provide medical services prescribed by licensed physicians. They must also administer “skilled nursing care” and related services for a minimum period of 24 hours per day to individuals admitted for illness. When doctors or nurses are negligent in their provision of care to patients, they may be liable for malpractice. In addition to jeopardizing their license, medical providers are also subject to civil suit by patients and families harmed by their neglect.

Personal injury law provides an avenue for injured patients and their loved ones to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and future costs associated with the neglect. Because medical neglect can cause a rapid deterioration in the patient’s health, these costs may include expenses for a future treatment, lost earnings, and a diminished quality of life. If medical neglect resulted in the wrongful death of a patient, surviving family members are entitled to additional damages associated with the loss of relationship with the deceased.

If you or someone you know is the victim of medical neglect, contact the experienced Maine medical neglect lawyers at Peter Thompson & Associates today. We have a strong track record of success in cases involving nursing home abuse. Our seasoned attorneys and highly trained experts perform a comprehensive evaluation of every allegation of neglect, finding all parties liable for the patient’s harm. At Peter Thompson & Associates, we are dedicated to helping you achieve the compensation you deserve. We work on a contingency basis, which means we do not get paid unless you do. Call 800.804.2004 today for a free consultation, or contact us online.

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