[Music] Hi, my name is Kenneth Berger, and I handle nursing home neglect and abuse cases across the Myrtle Beach area and, in fact, throughout South Carolina. If you're watching this video, you know that Myrtle Beach has become a popular place for people to try to come and enjoy their retirement. In fact, more than 25% of Myrtle Beach's population is over the age of 60. Because of that, Myrtle Beach has a lot of assisted living facilities and skilled nursing homes, with only more to come.

Now, I've got parents, and I know they deserve the best. If the time ever comes where I think they'd benefit from assisted living or skilled nursing, I want the best for them. The reality is that when seniors are placed in nursing homes, they don't always get the best. In fact, my concern is sometimes they get neglected, sometimes they get abused. So, what are some of the signs to look for to know if abuse or neglect is going on? One of the most common is bed sores, right? That's when we have skin breakdown. Sometimes, it's on the elbows, sometimes, it's on the heels, and a lot of times, it sits back there on the tailbone. That's one thing to look for. Another thing is whether or not the sheets have been soiled. A common sign of some type of abuse is if your loved one has become different as far as their personality goes. Do they seem timid? Do they seem quieter? Do they seem withdrawn or afraid? All of those things are warning signs to look for. Has there been rapid weight loss? Again, if you notice any of these signs or symptoms, it could be nothing at all, or it could be that there's abuse or neglect.

So, what can you do? You can report the abuse, okay? You can report the abuse to the nursing home itself; you can report the abuse to local authorities, and you can report the abuse to the state government with the Commission on Aging. You also may need to get them out of their retirement. That's a step that can be easier to say than it actually is to do, but whatever steps need to be taken to get your loved one out of that dangerous environment, we certainly want you to take. After that's done, or if you need help accomplishing some of those reporting goals and getting your loved one moved, contact a lawyer, okay? We don't want your loved one to suffer needlessly, nor do we want an assisted living facility or skilled nursing center to be able to get away with it and continue doing it to your loved one in addition to other residents.

As an attorney, we've got the right to go out and get medical records, to collect evidence, to work with private investigators, to send out Freedom of Information requests to DHEC to find out this facility's history and if there's a record of abuse. In the end, what we're really there to do is just to demand accountability. We want you and your family to be safer, we want other residents to be safer, and we want these nursing homes to know that they flat-out can't get away with it without being held accountable. If you have any questions whatsoever about a potential nursing home neglect or abuse case, or if you just have questions and want peace of mind that your loved one is safe, contact us. You can do so right here on the website through our live chat feature or with the contact form. You can also just simply call us. No matter which way you choose to reach out, know that we're here to help, we're here to answer your questions, and we're here to make sure that your family member is kept safe. [Music]

What is Considered Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect?Malnourished Elderly Patient in Nursing Home

Nursing home abuse and neglect can occur in various forms in care facilities across South Carolina. In instances of abuse or neglect, facilities are often understaffed, employees have not received adequate training, or the facility’s administration has failed to conduct proper background checks to ensure their residents are in good hands. Either way, if your loved one has suffered one of the below types of nursing home abuse or neglect, you have the right to hold the responsible party accountable.

1. Neglect occurs when the care facility fails to provide its residents with proper care. This may include not maintaining proper hygiene or allowing residents to become dehydrated or malnourished. Nursing home negligence often stems from indifference, poor training, or understaffing.  

2. Physical abuse is when caretakers intentionally cause physical harm to nursing home residents. Any act to cause physical harm, such as hitting, kicking, burning, or shoving, is considered physical abuse and is not acceptable in any South Carolina nursing home.

3. Emotional abuse is any type of verbal or psychological abuse, such as name-calling, insulting, or isolating from friends and family, that leaves the vulnerable person feeling afraid or distressed.

4. Sexual abuse includes any unwanted sexual interaction.

How Long Do You Have to File a Lawsuit Against a Nursing Home?

If you or a loved one have been subjected to nursing home abuse or neglect, you have 3 years from when the injury was discovered to file a lawsuit against a non-government defendant. If the facility is run by the state or county, you may only have 2 years. If you are unsure whether or not you have a case, it never hurts to speak with a nursing home abuse attorney before it is too late. Our South Carolina nursing home abuse lawyer team offers free consultations and is ready to offer honest legal guidance and ensure your legal rights are protected.  

How to Report Abuse or Neglect at a Nursing Home in Myrtle Beach

Abuse and neglect of a vulnerable adult can pose a serious risk of harm to the victim and future victims. If you suspect this is occurring, first and foremost, remove the person from the facility and report the issue. If the danger is immediate, 911 is likely the best option. Another option is to call the Adult Protective Services division of the South Carolina Department of Social Services. We also recommend setting up a free consultation with a South Carolina nursing home abuse lawyer to ensure the injured person’s legal rights are protected.

Whatever the type or degree of abuse you or a family member have been subjected to, you are not alone. Our law firm believes that our most vulnerable populations deserve to be treated with dignity and respect through the end of their lives. That means holding abusive caretakers and nursing homes responsible for their wrongdoing. To speak with a Myrtle Beach nursing home abuse attorney, call our office at (843) 427-2800 or start a live chat using the chat box below.