Medical Care Rights for Nursing Home Residents

Monday, November 1, 2021

Medical Care Rights for Nursing Home Residents

Nursing home abuse and neglect is a well-documented nationwide problem. Unfortunately for Illinois residents, the state has more reported nursing home abuse cases than any other state in the United States. Denying nursing home residents necessary medical care is part of that abuse and is in violation of the law.

Under both state and federal law, Illinois nursing home residents have clear rights when they move into long-term care facilities. One of them is the right to receive necessary medical care. If you believe your loved one was denied proper care, speak with a Chicago nursing home abuse lawyer right away.  

Medical care includes but is not limited to:

  1. Nursing
  2. Emergency care
  3. Rehabilitation therapies
  4. Social work
  5. Dental

Failure to provide a nursing home resident with adequate medical care can result in harm, preventable medical complications, and it may also cause severe physical and emotional problems for the nursing home resident who has been denied the care they need. 

The medical needs of nursing home residents are often urgent, and denying it for them is more consequential than it might be for younger populations. If your loved one has been denied medical care or if their complaints are being ignored, nursing home abuse lawyers are available to help.

Who Can Order Medical Care?

Nurses or nurses’ aides can provide some medical care and therapies to a nursing home resident without a doctor’s order or by using existing doctor’s orders. This usually includes routine treatments like applying antibiotic ointment and an appropriate bandage to a minor wound or using padded protection to prevent bedsores.

More severe issues such as a fall, manifestation of symptoms of an infection, chest pain, shortness of breath, or complaints of other unusual symptoms often require a call to a licensed physician to tend to the issue. A nurse is obligated to call the physician under those circumstances, and a failure to do so can often constitute negligence. 

If that physician orders specific tests or certain actions to be taken, then the nursing staff must do as directed by the doctor unless they believe it is unsafe to do so or the resident refuses the care.  For this reason, it is important to make sure your loved one in a nursing home understands that, even though they may have a right to refuse treatment, it is critical that they accept treatment that has been ordered by the doctor.

Regardless of who failed to get or give a nursing home resident the medical care they needed, a nursing home abuse attorney can hold them responsible for the injuries suffered. Nursing homes that violate the law or otherwise neglect residents should be fully accountable.

Speak with a Chicago Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today

If you have a loved one in an Illinois nursing home who has been denied medical care, you have legal options that can be pursued to hold the nursing home accountable for the harm that resulted from the neglect. Contact our team at Malman Law today to discuss your options.

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