When a nursing home resident suffers an illness or injury or passes away, the resident’s loved ones may allege that the nursing home failed to provide the resident with adequate care. If the resident’s family decides to file a lawsuit against the nursing home, the nursing home’s attorneys will first need to collect all the documentation that may be used in the case.
Documentary evidence is a key part of any nursing home negligence case and a defense attorney will need to thoroughly review all documents to discover any issues that may need to be addressed later in the case. Here are some of the key documents that may be used:
- Investigative reports, including police reports, internal reports, and state/federal records
- The resident’s medical records
- Facility policies and procedures
- Training manuals and other learning materials provided to new employees
- Employee records for all employees involved in the resident’s care
- Staffing schedules and shift records
- Visitor logs
- Photographs of the resident and their injuries
The public is understandably sympathetic to vulnerable people who have been injured, and to their families. As a result, it isn’t always easy to defend against accusations of nursing home abuse or neglect. However, we must never forget that nursing homes have the right to defend themselves in litigation.
When a defense attorney helps collect the documents needed for the case, they have an early opportunity to begin preparing a nursing home neglect defense.
Defense strategies will vary from case to case. A defense may rest on the idea that the patient’s own negligence contributed to the harm they experienced and that the nursing home acted in accordance with the acceptable standard of care.