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“Heat” Neglect in Florida Nursing Homes

During summer months, caretakers must be more wary of the potential dangers of high temperatures. Babies and young children as well as elderly adults are more vulnerable and should never be left unattended in a vehicle or out in the sun.

Caretakers should also make sure air conditioning is functional and that proper precautions are taken to prevent heat stroke. In another instance of nursing home abuse and neglect, a Florida nursing home is being investigated and could face criminal and civil penalties for leaving a 90-year-old resident outside in the heat and unattended for hours. According to reports, the patient nearly died from the heat-related injuries.

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Throughout the state of Florida, families turn to nursing care facilities to assistant and provide necessary medical attention to elderly loved ones who are no longer able to care for themselves. Unfortunately, instances of abuse and neglect run rampant, as for-profit homes cut back on staffing, fail to screen employees, and are generally negligent in caring for residents. In the most severe cases, nursing home patients have suffered abuse at the hands of caretakers.

Our Fort Lauderdale nursing home abuse attorneys are dedicated to raising awareness to protect the rights of victims and their families. In addition to advocating for our clients, we are committed to raising awareness to prevent future abuse.

According to police reports, staff at the Aristocrat Nursing Home in Naples put the 90-year-old patient outside in his wheel chair around 2:00 in the afternoon. The staff left the man unattended for over three hours. When they finally returned to check on him, he had a temperature of 105 degrees and was suffering from serious and life-threatening medical conditions, including sun burn, heat stroke and dehydration. As a result of the serious injuries, the man went into cardiac arrest and was rushed to the hospital. Though he survived, this is a case of severe neglect that could have been deadly.

Since the man was taken from the home and placed under hospital care, the Florida Department of Children and Families has initiated an investigation of the care facility. Though initial reports did not uncover prior cases of abuse or neglect, there were prior reports involving the nursing home. As with any cases of suspected abuse or neglect, authorities as well as family members should pursue a thorough investigation. An experienced and independent advocate should review the facts of the case, identify and locate key witnesses, and ensure that all medical documentation and other evidence is preserved. In addition to criminal cases of neglect, nursing home staff and facilities can be held civilly liable in the event of injury or death.

With temperatures in Florida potentially dangerous year-round, caretakers and family member should be wary about leaving an elderly person in the sun or in a vehicle unattended. For elderly victims, heat stroke and related injuries can be deadly. Nursing home staff should be held accountable in the event of an injury or fatality related to heat and neglect.

Freeman Injury Law — 1-800-561-7777 for a free appointment to discuss your rights.

More Blog Entries:
Putting an End to Elderly Abuse and Neglect, July 22, 2014, Pompano Beach Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog

Florida Gets Low Ranking for Elderly Care and Support
, July 30, 2014, West Palm Beach Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog

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