In one of the most disturbing and frightful examples of nursing home violence against a nursing home resident that was caught on video, an 87-year-old paralyzed woman was shown being struck violently and cursed at by the very aides who were supposed to be providing her with necessary care. The video camera was set up in the woman’s room by her daughter and grandson after the grandson noticed unexplained bruising on the woman’s body last year.
The video shows one nursing aide roughly removing the woman’s oxygen mask from her face and then hitting the woman twice on her head for no reason. The nursing aide lost her job, lost her license, and was arrested after the video caught her ruthless and demeaning behavior, but it makes you stop and wonder how many times in the past the elderly woman or other nursing home residents may have been physically abused by the same aide or other nursing home caregivers.
Another employee of the same nursing home who has not been arrested can be heard on the video telling the woman, “Lady, why don’t you die?” A third nursing home employee was caught on tape roughly handling the woman’s body while changing her bed sheets. Even a supervisor was allegedly heard on the video cursing at the woman.
The nursing home had no comment about what was depicted on the video but is being sued by the woman’s family for medical malpractice and other claims. The woman’s family hopes that by going public with the video of the elderly woman’s abusive treatment that they may help other residents’ families become aware that they must be vigilant in checking up on family members who are in nursing homes.
We urge you to view the clip from the video for yourself.
Many states in the U.S. still do not allow video cameras to be placed in residents’ rooms due to alleged privacy concerns. We suggest that in many situations, the privacy concerns of nursing home residents and nursing home staff may be outweighed by the concerns regarding the safety and care of the residents. If nursing home employees believe that they will never be caught abusing or neglecting the residents they are assigned to take care of, then callous (or worse) nursing home employees may consider and engage in abusive or neglectful conduct that they would not otherwise engage in if they knew that their actions were being monitored and/or recorded.
In this day and age when almost all telephone calls to businesses are subject to being monitored or recorded, and our movements in public are often being viewed or recorded by public or private video cameras set up outside of businesses, parking garages, state and local governmental offices, and on public street corners so that the police or others may monitor pedestrians or traffic, all in the stated interest of public safety, maybe it is time to change the laws in those states that prohibit cameras in the rooms of nursing home residents so that they have the same hope of being safe that a pedestrian on a public street now enjoys.
If you or a loved one were abused or neglected in a nursing home, you may wish to consult with a local medical malpractice attorney regarding your legal rights and obligations.
Click here to visit our website or call us toll free at 800-295-3959 to be connected with medical malpractice lawyers in your state who may be willing to investigate your possible medical malpractice claim for you and file a medical malpractice claim on your behalf, if appropriate.
Turn to us when you don’t know where to turn.