Common Defenses of a Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Case

You know what aggravates me sometimes, are these defenses that the nursing homes come up with when your loved one has been abused, neglected, and not treated with respect and dignity. Some of them are totally ridiculous and let me just go over a couple of them.

One of them is, “Well, it’s the family’s fault. They shouldn’t have put him in here anyway.” Well, obviously it’s not the family’s fault. They’re putting the resident in the nursing home because they can’t care for the resident, and they’re trusting the nursing home to provide that care. Nobody wants to put their loved one in a nursing home, and if a nursing home accepts the resident then they should provide the care that they promised.

The second defense that they like to use is, “Well, we’re only nurses. We rely on medical doctors to treat the resident.” Well, normally that defense is also without any merit, because the doctors rely on the nursing staff to be their eyes and ears. If the nursing facility doesn’t tell the doctor what’s going on with the patient, how is the doctor supposed to know?

The third defense that they like to use is what we call the ambulance defense. Somehow, by some miracle of medicine, the resident develops whatever problem they are suffered from not in the nursing home, but in the ride on the way to the hospital. Whether it’s a pressure sore exposing bone, a cellulitis that is a horrible, terrible wound on the leg, pneumonia. “They didn’t leave here with a broken hip, must have happened in the hospital.” That’s another defense.

Then the most ridiculous one, the most outrageous one, the one they like to us as a rap sheet is, “Well, they were going to die anyway.” Now, in our office it’s not whether you’re going to die, we all know we’re going to die, it’s how you die. What we try and do is make sure that the nursing home is held accountable and responsible if they don’t live up to their promises and the trust that was given to them.


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