San Luis Obispo County Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Lawyers
San Luis Obispo County has only eight nursing homes and over 40 assisted living facilities for the elderly, which provides care and safety to several thousand SLO area seniors every day. While most of the time these nursing facilities provide satisfactory care, on too many occasions patients fall through the cracks and are subjected to neglect and even physical abuse. Our San Luis Obispo nursing home neglect attorneys at the Southern California Nursing Home Law Group have a wealth of experience in representing individuals and families who have suffered as a result of abuse or neglect in the nursing home or assisted living setting.
If you believe that a loved one may have been neglected or abused, or suffered an illness or injury that was unexpected, call us today for a free consultation.Who is an "Elder"?
Under California law, a person qualifies as an "elder" if they are over 65 years of age. But it is not only elders who can bring an action for neglect or abuse. The elder abuse laws apply equally to a "dependent adults," which in California is defined as any person between ages 18 and 64 who has a physical limitation that restricts his or her ability to carry out normal activities and is an inpatient at a hospital or nursing facility.Identifying Elder Abuse and Neglect
Under California's Elder Abuse and Dependent Civil Protection Act, nursing home or assisted living abuse is defined as "physical abuse, neglect, abandonment, isolation, abduction, or other treatment with resulting physical harm or pain or mental suffering, or the deprivation by a care custodian..." A nursing home abuse attorney can advise San Luis Obispo County residents and their families on whether this misconduct may have occurred.What Does a Typical Neglect or Abuse Case Look Like?
People tend to think of elder abuse as only the physical assault of someone who is of advanced age. The truth is it is much more broadly defined. Most of the cases our San Luis Obispo nursing home negligence lawyers see are cases involving negligent caregivers who fail to meet the expected standard of care, which is simply following the documented plan of care. How do these failures manifest themselves?
Bed sores: Bed sores or pressure ulcers arise on patients who spend most or all of their days in bed. In these high risk patients, the nursing home must have a plan of care prepared to prevent the development of these sores, which might include an air mattress, elevating the heels, turning the patient on a regular bases, and a regular examination of the skin to catch the sores early. Pressure sores can be life-threatening and should never develop while under professional care.
Falls: Falls can be devastating to an elderly resident of a nursing facility. While not every fall can be prevented, every nursing home patient who is at high risk for falling must protected with proper preventative interventions by caregivers. A failure to prevent falls may be considered neglect.
Abandonment: The abandonment of a nursing or assisted living patient can occur a variety of ways. It can be literal, where caregivers actually leave the vulnerable senior alone and without care for an extended period of time. Or it can occur when the resident has a need, such as medical care, but is denied that care. Anytime a resident is exposed to harm because of a failure to provide care it may give rise to a charge of abandonment.
Malnutrition or Dehydration: Caregivers in nursing facilities have a duty to provide adequate nourishment to residents, which means a healthy diet, and enough liquids to maintain proper hydration. Even just a few days of a failure to provide nourishment can have disastrous results, including death.San Luis Obispo County Elder Neglect & Abuse Legal Resources
San Luis Obispo County Adult Protective Services. 800-451-5155 (24-hour hotline)
Ombudsman. The Long Term Care Ombudsman Services of San Luis Obispo County gives residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities access to advocacy services, complaint investigation and resolution, facility monitoring visits, and witnessing advanced health care directives. Call (805)785-0132.
Adult Protective Services. To report suspected elder abuse or neglect call the Adult Services Hotline at (805) 781-1790 during regular business hours. After business hours call (844) 729-8011
California Department of Public Health. To make a complaint against a skilled nursing facility, or to confirm the license, contact the San Luis Obispo County office of the CDPH at (800) 547-8267.
California Department of Social Services. For complaints against an assisted living facility, or to check license status, call (805) 562-0400.Request a Free Consultation With an Experienced San Luis Obispo County Elder Abuse Lawyers
If you have a loved one that you believe has been victimized by skilled nursing or assisted living care, please call the Southern California Nursing Home Law Group anytime at (866) 607-1325 or complete our online questionnaire. We would be happy to discuss your situation with you.