A horrific incident in Texas this week highlights the potential for abuse that thousands of Illinois nursing home residents face every day at the hands of those entrusted with their care. This recent incident occurred in Kaufman County, Texas where an 88-year-old nursing home resident was severely abused by an employee of the home.
The woman, who is wheelchair-bound and has Alzheimer’s, sustained a large and serious cut across much of her forehead that her family saw one day upon a visit. No one in the home has been willing to explain how or why the cut happened but the victim’s face and forehead also has significant bruising across her forehead, eyelid, check, and side of her face. A family member of the victim has released very disturbing photos that depict the injuries she sustained.
Family members reported the injury to local police who began an investigation into the incident. On Tuesday night, an employee of the nursing home was arrested and charged with felony aggravated assault causing injury to an elderly person. Police say that the man was caring for the victim at the time she sustained the injuries and when he was questioned, the man tried to conceal the incident and tried to blame another employee. He is currently being held in jail.
The victim in this incident has been removed from the nursing home and transported to a local hospital where she is being treated and cared for by physicians. The nursing home in question has been cited and fined at least twice in the past, once in 2011 and once in 2012, for providing sub-standard care to its residents. Another complaint of verbal and mental abuse lodged by a resident against an employee was substantiated in 2012 but the home was not fined as the blame was placed on a single employee who violated the policies of the nursing home.
Elder abuse in nursing homes like that described in this incident occur across the state of Illinois and result in numerous injuries to residents every year. Families of elderly people in need of care put their trust in nursing homes and believe their loved ones will be treated with care, but unfortunately not every facility does so. Though it may be the action of one or more individual employees that cause harm to a patient, the nursing home itself may be responsible for hiring an unqualified or incapable employee or for creating an environment where neglect and abuse are allowed to occur.
Nursing homes are known to to cover their tracks and be less than truthful when an injury to a resident happens, meaning that even if there was negligence or abuse, it can be very difficult to find out exactly what happened. The sad truth is that the vulnerable condition of many residents makes them easy targets for abuse, especially those with mental deficiencies and the inability to speak.
If your loved one has been injured or harmed while a resident in a nursing home, call the Illinois nursing home abuse lawyers at Abels & Annes, P.C. today for a free telephone consultation. We also offer free in-home and in-hospital consultations if your loved one has been injured. We will answer your questions 24 hours a day and we have a lawyer standing by, so please call us now at (312) 924-7575 or (855) 529-2442.
Prior Blog Entries:
Homosexual Seniors may be at High Risk for Abuse in Illinois Nursing Homes, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, published June 4, 2013.
River Forest, Lisle Nursing Home Residents Evacuated From Flooded Facilities, Illinois Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog, published June 1, 2013.
I-Team: Nursing Home Employee Arrested In Connection With Patient’s Head Injuries, CBS 11 News, published June 4, 2013.