According to a report prepared by the Special Investigations Division of the House Government Reform Committee, one in three nursing homes across the United States have been cited for abuse. This abuse includes physical, sexual and verbal abuse. The report found that there have been nearly 9,000 instances of nursing home abuse at more than 5,250 nursing homes during just a two-year-period in the late 1990s. And those are just the abuses that have been uncovered and reported. The most common forms of abuse include untreated bedsores, poor medical care, malnutrition, dehydration, and inadequate hygiene.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has joined the Snellville Police in Georgia after consistent reports of abuse and neglect at the New London Health Center. After 77-year-old Carol Sheppard suffered a large gash on her head while at the facility, the nursing home staff declined an opportunity to call 911, and instead called a private non-emergency ambulance service. When Sheppard got to the hospital, medical staff personnel were alarmed to see not only the large head gash, but also “a bedsore to the bone.” When asked how the head wound occurred, the nursing home reported that Sheppard had fallen.
But according to Sheppard’s daughter, Debbie Williams, her mother could not have fallen. Sheppard was unable to move, never mind walk or roll herself over in bed. In short, the nursing home’s story was impossible. Admitted to the hospital in mid-April, Sheppard passed away on April 29th. Police have not announced whether the cause of death was related to the abuse.
According to the Gwinnett Daily Post, Sheppard’s story caused Snellville Police to take a second look at the local nursing home. Apparently, there had been seven other instances of reported abuse, ranging from dehydration and malnourishment, to more severe claims. Police called in the FBI to investigate further. Meanwhile, Sheppard’s daughter fully intends to file a lawsuit against the nursing home. She is represented by attorney Darren Tobin.
Have you or a loved one been the victim of nursing home abuse and neglect? If so, please call 617-787-3700 today for a free consultation with one of our expert Massachusetts nursing home abuse attorneys.