When you put a loved one in a nursing home, you want to ensure their quality of life and overall care at this facility. When care needs are ignored or corners are cut, filing nursing home abuse lawsuits may be the only way to let your family member recover and to hold these companies accountable.
Nursing home residents at NHC facilities in Greenville, Mauldin, and Anderson, SC are owed care and respect. Some patients may suffer from injuries due to neglect or abuse at NHC properties.
Contact a Greenville nursing home abuse attorney at Dan Pruitt Injury Law Firm to review your case and help file a lawsuit against NHC.
What is National HealthCare Corporation (NHC)?
National HealthCare Corporation is a for-profit nursing home company with more than 100 locations across the country. These assisted living and nursing home facilities are spread across ten states.
This company has been named in numerous reports regarding their quality of care. If you have a loved one in a nursing home managed by this corporation, you need to be aware of potential issues that could put your family member at risk.
Examples of Issues at NHC Nursing Homes
Many nursing homes and assisted living facilities may have staff shortages. These staff shortages can contribute to a higher chance of abuse and neglect, ultimately harming the patients inside.
Although all staff members and these corporations as a whole should put patient safety and dignity first, far too many issues, including complaints, abuse, neglect, or other safety violations may end up harming a loved one. It’s important to note that Medicare assigns quality ratings to every skilled nursing facility based on results of a government inspection.
National HealthCare Corporation facilities have frequently received low ratings on their annual inspection, with three of them receiving the lowest possible score or one star. The quality of care has been an issue for many years at NHC. NHC is frequently named as a defendant in lawsuits relating to their nursing home care and in complaints filed with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Care.
One 2017 report revealed that the company was facing 60 lawsuits at that time. Some of those cases involve claims about fatal fires at a facility, inadequate care for patients who fall, and lawsuits regarding pressure ulcers, which occur when a person does not get moved frequently enough.
Patients at NHC facilities have medical needs that require ongoing care, such as conditions like depression, COPD, atrial fibrillation, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s, schizophrenia, cancer, diabetes, stroke, and ischemic heart disease. Each patient is owed a duty of care from nursing home staff, and when this duty of care is ignored, the patient might suffer unnecessary injuries.
Annual reports from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, complaints, and lawsuits, revealed that deficiencies at these facilities include things such as:
- Failure to keep organized, complete, and accurate clinical records
- Failure to serve, cook, and store food in a safe way
- Failure to immediately inform a resident, family members and the resident’s doctor about situations involving the residents
- Failing to assess a resident when there is a substantial change in their medical condition
- Failing to develop a comprehensive care plan
- Failing to provide pharmaceutical services to meet the needs of a resident
- Failure to honor the resident’s right to a dignified existence
All of these are serious violations with harmful consequences for a loved one.
How NHC Has Tried to Avoid Lawsuits
Recognizing the substantial potential cost of lawsuits against the corporation, NHC frequently uses several tactics to attempt to avoid taking legal accountability. This can include attempts to pass legislation that protects them but could potentially harm residents, signing away resident rights, and lawsuits in multiple states over damage caps to limit their potential payouts.
Finding an aggressive and qualified Greenville nursing home abuse lawyer could be essential for the family members of any victim who has suffered neglect or abuse at the hands of this corporation.
What to Do If You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse
As a family member, you may be in an important position for helping to respond if your loved one lives in a nursing home. It is important to start by understanding the rights of that resident, including proper medical treatment, respectful care, freedom from neglect and abuse carried out by residents, freedom from unlawful restraints, and an abuse-free and discrimination-free experience.
As a loved one, you may be one of the first people to speak up against nursing home abuse and neglect, which may not only protect your family member, but also other residents in the same facility.
Typical examples of abuse and neglect include unreasonable seclusion, sexual assault, or battery, lack of care for existing medical problems, assault and battery, and use of chemical or physical restraints that is not consistent with physician authorized care.
Recognizing the signs and symptoms of nursing home abuse may help protect your loved one from getting worse. Some of the most common signs of verbal and physical abuse and neglect include:
- Chapped lips and other signs of dehydration
- Bed injuries
- Pressure ulcers
- Rapid weight loss
- Unsanitary or dangerous conditions
- Unexplained injuries
- Unexpected death of the resident
- Reluctance to speak in front of staff members
There are a few things you can do to express your concerns:
- Ask to speak with staff
- File a complaint at the state level
- Hire an NHC nursing home abuse lawyer
If your loved one has already been seriously injured, you may need to hire an attorney as soon as possible.
How to File a Nursing Home Complaint Against NHC
If you have expressed concerns to the staff at an NHC facility, you may also want to report this issue to the state government. You can file a nursing home complaint with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.
In addition to filing a complaint, your family member might have a damage claim for a nursing home abuse lawsuit, too.
Contact a Greenville Nursing Home Abuse Attorney for Help
Surviving victims or their family members may be interested in filing a lawsuit against NHC. If you believe you have evidence of nursing home neglect or abuse endangering residents, you need to come forward with your evidence as soon as possible.