There are countless reports detailing poor conditions in nursing homes. These devastating and scary stories raise serious questions about whether our loved ones are receiving the treatment and medical care that they need during this phase of their lives. One of the key aspects of achieving quality medical treatment in nursing homes is ensuring that residents receive the appropriate amount of medications and that they are not overmedicated. Medication overdoses can cause serious health complications and even death. The Stuart nursing home abuse lawyers at Donaldson & Weston have guided numerous families through the legal process, including residents of Martin, Palm Beach, and St. Lucie Counties. We understand how emotionally traumatizing and physically painful this situation can be for a victim and their family, and we will fight to ensure that you receive the justice that you deserve.Understanding the Signs of Medication Overdoses in a Nursing Home
According to the Center for Disease Control, many nursing home residents require up to eight medications each month to address various health conditions. Although federal guidelines mandate that medications are dispensed in a regulated manner, many residents unfortunately receive the incorrect medications, wrong dosages, or both. This can result in serious medical conditions, side effects, and even death in some cases. There are many reasons why a nursing home may provide incorrect medications or dosages. The first common reason is understaffing or undertrained staff. If the facility does not have enough staff to oversee the dispensing of medication, it is easier for mistakes to be made. If staff are not trained properly in identifying each resident’s medication needs or understanding drug reactions, there is also a higher chance of medication overdoses taking place.
In more egregious situations, the nursing home staff may provide higher doses of medication in an effort to subdue patients. This type of intentional and reckless conduct is unacceptable and may warrant severe consequences such as criminal prosecution. If you are a nursing home resident and believe that you have received a medication overdose, or if you believe that your loved one is being mistreated at a nursing home facility, you should speak to a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.Bring a Negligence Action Against the Nursing Home That Caused Your Injuries
After suffering injuries as a result of a medication overdose, you can assert a negligence action against the nursing home responsible for your care. In this lawsuit, you will first need to prove that the nursing home failed to act according to the applicable standard of care. Florida has enacted many laws and regulations intended to protect elderly individuals and to ensure that they receive a certain level of care and attention. In general, these rules guarantee residents a clean, safe, homelike, and comfortable living arrangement and assistance from qualified professionals. They also guarantee the right to adequate medication, hygiene, and medical assistance. In the event that the nursing home retained a staff physician who was responsible for the medication overdose, you may have a medical malpractice claim against the physician who made the medication error as well.
After establishing that the nursing home failed to render sufficient care in handling medications, you must show that this caused your injuries to occur. Without establishing this causal link, you will not be able to recover compensation even if the defendant did act negligently. The last step of the case will involve determining the amount of damages that you are entitled to receive. This includes reimbursement for medical expenses associated with the overdose, in addition to any compensation for ongoing medical needs.Contact a Nursing Home Injury Lawyer in the Stuart Area
Realizing that a nursing home failed to provide sufficient care for a loved one is a traumatic and devastating situation. We trust these facilities to care for elderly individuals, and providing appropriate and timely medications is one of the clearest parts of this expectation. While your family and you are coping with the stress and injuries associated with a medication overdose, the seasoned attorneys at Donaldson & Weston will ensure that your legal rights are protected. Serving clients in Stuart, Jupiter, and Port St. Lucie, as well as the surrounding areas, we offer a free consultation to help you learn about your rights following an incident of physical, emotional, sexual, or financial abuse. Call us at 772-266-5555 or contact us online.