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Nursing Home Negligence in Illinois

Casey Woodruff

undefinedWhen an elderly loved one becomes unable to live alone or requires more care and attention than we are able to provide, many of us begin thinking about the possibility of a nursing home. While nursing homes can provide our older adults with a safe residence in which they can receive the care they need, nursing home abuse and neglect happens much too often. Indeed, nursing home negligence can result in serious personal injuries, and in some cases those injuries turn out to be fatal.

What do you need to know about nursing home negligence in Illinois? In short, it’s important to know the signs and symptoms of neglect. And if you do suspect that your elderly parent has suffered injuries as a result of nursing home neglect, you should contact an experienced Aurora nursing home negligence attorney as soon as possible.

Aging Population Across America

In Illinois and across the country, the senior population is growing. The 2010 Census “recorded the greatest number and proportion of people age 65 and older in all of decennial history,” which amounts to more than 40 million people. To put that number in perspective, that’s around 13 percent of the entire population.  Experts predict that, by the year 2050, adults over the age of 65 will account for around 20 percent of the total U.S. population.

In Illinois in 2014, people aged 65 and older made up 13.5 percent of our state’s population. That’s nearly in line with the national total. Because of the rapidly growing senior population, the Illinois Department on Aging has created a state plan aimed at improving community-based care options for the elderly as well as putting an elder rights plan into place.

Why is the population of older adults such an important concern? In short, the more senior citizens in Illinois, the greater the number of people who may require care in a nursing home and thus can be subject to elder neglect.

Learning More About Nursing Home Neglect

Neglect or negligence in a nursing home can result in many different types of injuries. In general, the Administration on Aging (AoA) and the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) consider nursing home neglect to be a form of abuse. Neglect often refers to a situation in which an elderly nursing home resident simply isn’t receiving the proper care and attention. Neglect can lead to severe and life-threatening injuries, and we should all know the signs and symptoms. The AoA provides information about the warning signs of neglect, which include but are not limited to:

  • Lack of food;
  • Lack of basic hygiene;
  • Living area that’s cluttered, dirty, or in disrepair;
  • Lack of supervision, particularly for patients suffering from dementia;
  • Lack of medical aids, such as glasses, dentures, hearing aids, medications, or walkers;
  • Confinement in a bed; and
  • Presence of bedsores or pressure ulcers.

One of the biggest problems associated with nursing home negligence, according to the Nursing Home Abuse Center, is the high rate of falls.  Approximately 1,800 nursing home residents suffer wrongful deaths each year as a result of fall-related injuries.  Falls are generally common among the elderly, but nursing homes and other facilities have a responsibility to take steps to prevent slips and falls, or dangerous falls from heights.

If you are concerned about your elderly loved one’s safety or care in an Illinois nursing home, you shouldn’t hesitate to contact an aggressive Aurora nursing home abuse lawyer about your case. Reach out to the professionals at Woodruff Johnson & Evans today.

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