The head of the AARP contacted the governor’s office in Baton Rouge to ask that nursing homes not be shielded from liability in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Letter summaries the state’s problems in nursing homes
The organization boasts almost half a million members in the state of Louisiana and some of them are living in nursing homes and other assisted living facilities. There are 277 nursing homes in Louisiana which care for about 26,000 residents at any given time. However, about 40% of all COVID-19 deaths in the state happened inside of a nursing home, which is a serious public health issue. There has a been a history of advocacy from the AARP and others for the retired and elderly in the state. Unfortunately, nursing homes remain one of the places where severe illnesses or other problems that affect the elderly are most likely to happen.
The AARP acknowledged that the decision to bring a lawsuit can be taxing for a family, but it must remain an option if these facilities are to be held accountable and for victims to have an avenue for justice. This is especially important considering that nursing home inspections were suspended due to the pandemic and there was less oversight. It seems that the pandemic along with government mandated shutdowns created conditions that were certainly not favorable for residents isolated in the facilities.
The letter concluded by acknowledging the fact that the pandemic is not the fault of nursing home faculty and staff. However, they should still be held responsible for negligence or intentional acts of abuse.
Lawsuits against nursing homes
As a general rule, nursing homes can normally be sued for any improper treatment or neglect that leads to illness or death. Some governments around the country have thought about temporarily suspending certain types of lawsuits to shield nursing homes and other businesses from liability related to the coronavirus pandemic. However, nursing home staff and administrators are clearly responsible for certain problems that were caused by the outbreak, especially considering many homes have been warned or cited for unsanitary conditions in the past. During a viral outbreak, these conditions can quickly become lethal to anyone housed in the facility. COVID-19 is known to be a virus that most strongly affects people who are very old, have serious health problems, or meet both criteria. This is why nursing homes should be a primary area of focus, as they are the places where death is mostly likely to occur.
Talk to a nursing home abuse attorney in Baton Rouge
There are local lawyers who can help you after an incident at a nursing home in Louisiana. To learn more, contact:
3960 Government St., Baton Rouge, LA 70806