Poor care standards, understaffing, and unjustifiable laxity lead to injuries to residents and filing of large number of Kentucky nursing home neglect lawsuits every year. Failure of care facilities to attend to residents, provide them food and hygienic ambience, and ensure protection against abuse ruins the lives of seniors who need ample care to prolong their healthy living. In Kentucky, where nursing homes are at their lowest ebb as far as the skilled care is concerned, neglect and abuse of residents is frequent.
In October 2010, a nursing home negligence claim filed against Progressive Step, which owns care centers in Kentucky and seven other states, resulted in a $38 million settlement. As many as 33 of ProStep facilities investigated between 2007 to 2013 were found to be lacking in several areas, including number of skilled staff, attentive care, adequate treatment, and hygienic conditions. The nursing home neglect lawsuit was initiated against the operator to penalize it for “disturbing” substandard care at its facilities that included four Kentucky care centers.
“The investigation identified many disturbing examples of falls, fractures, and head injuries to residents, often unnoticed by the staff for hours, as well as malnutrition, dehydration, pressure ulcers, and infections,” claimed the prosecution.
ProStep and its parent company Extendicare Health Services were also accused of unnecessary and improperly billing inmates that amounted to financial abuse and misappropriation of Medicaid funds, according to a Kentucky nursing home neglect lawyer representing several plaintiffs. Despite tall claims of caring services, the hospitals had fewer than required “skilled employees, trained staff, and supervisors” that severely compromised the standard of care. Very sick residents at its facilities were even left to die without adequate medical treatment while conditions long-term patients suffer from disability and inhuman conditions due to negligent care.
“Extendicare provided medically unreasonable and unnecessary rehabilitation therapy services, particularly during the patients’ assessment reference periods, so Extendicare could bill Medicare for those patients at the highest . . . levels,” reads the settlement documents submitted in the court. It paid $28 million to settle nursing home neglect claims in Kentucky and other states while $10 million was recovered for false Medicare billing.
Grounds for Kentucky Nursing Home Neglect Claims
- Wrongful death due to Kentucky nursing home negligence
- Physical abuse, including bodily harm, excessive restraint, kicking, punching, or injury inflicted intentionally.
- Physical negligence, including failure to attend, safeguard one patient from another, and ensure adequate physical care.
- Nursing home negligence, including lack of trained and skilled staff, nutritional food, medical care, proper hygienic condition, and disturbing care standard.
- Deficiencies, such as body odor, dirty clothing, malnutrition, dehydration, and ill-treatment.
- Medical negligence, including development of bedsores, improper medical care, absence of skilled nurses, no doctor visits despite having health problems, wrong medication, or failure to administer medicines timely.
- Sexual abuse by Kentucky nursing staff or other residents.
- Emotional cruelty, including denial of care, causing fear or mental stress, passive staff behavior, and failure to prevent a negative environment.
- Accidental injuries, such as slip and fall, theft, exploitation by outsiders, and failure to attend to disabled patients.
- Financial exploitation, including identity theft, scams, healthcare fraud, false billing, credit card theft, etc.
- Other Injuries, such as verbal abuse, intimidation, unreasonable mistreatment, sexually transmitted diseases, emotional trauma, selective ignorance, no support equipment, and causing anxiety in an inmate.
- Violation of resident rights explicitly and implicitly recognized under the law.
The Legal Aspect: File a Kentucky nursing home neglect lawsuit
Kentucky state law provides for both criminal and civil prosecutions for abuse and negligence at a care center. Anyone can file a complaint with the state Adult Protection Services for an investigation into the alleged abuse or negligence at any Kentucky nursing home. Penal actions and against the center and criminal prosecution against the erring staff ensue once the investigators verify the claim and report it to the police.
The civil side includes action in the form of litigation by the aggrieved inmate or his family members. They are at liberty to file lawsuits and seek economic as well as punitive damages to cover their tangible and intangible losses and suffering. The aid and advice of a Kentucky nursing home abuse attorney play an important part in obtaining records, evidence, and other necessary verifications significant to “establish breach of duty of care” by the facility or its staff.
Our Kentucky nursing home abuse lawyers offer to guide plaintiffs seeking actions against mistreatment and negligence at care centers. If you have reasons to believe that a resident is subject to abuse at a nursing home in Kentucky, please contact us or call on 1-866-447-0150 to discuss the best course of action.