South Carolina – June 14, 2021

Nursing home residents in South Carolina are afforded certain protections and levels of care in accordance with the Resident’s Bill of Rights, both under Federal and State laws. The Nursing Home Reform Act under Title IV of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987 outlines those rights at the federal level, and the South Carolina Omnibus Adult Protection Act addresses those rights at the state level.  When nursing home residents become victims of abuse, or negligence, a skilled nursing home abuse attorney in South Carolina may be able to help with the recovery of damages for residents, or their loved ones.

Ordinary negligence.

When a person fails to act in a reasonable manner, and take reasonable precautions that prudent persons would take under the same circumstances, and those actions, or lack of action, cause harm to another person, the actions could be considered ordinary negligence.  Residential facilities are inspected and governed by rules of the State’s licensing bureaus against acts of negligence, or gross negligence.  The mission of the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (LLR) is to promote the health, safety, and economic well-being of the public through regulation, licensing, enforcement, training, and education.  Contact an experienced nursing home attorney if you believe a nursing home staff nurse, or assisted living care worker has caused harm to a resident loved one.

Gross negligence.

Acting in a manner with reckless disregard for the safety of others, or exhibiting extreme indifference to a dangerous situation could be considered gross negligence.  This type of negligence is based on willful behaviors, disregarding others with the likelihood of foreseeable harm.  Gross negligence in a residential facility could be considered abuse and may reveal itself through lack of patient care, such as not providing food, water, or assistance with personal hygiene that could lead to malnutrition, exacerbate illnesses, or cause them through ulceration and sores that spread.

Proving negligence.

Nursing home residents who have been injured, or become ill because of another person’s negligent actions will need to prove the four main element of negligence existed.  They include:

  • Duty – nursing home administration, and caregivers owed the victim a legal duty to protect them from harm under the Nursing Home Resident Bill of Rights.
  • Breach of duty – there was a breach of legal duty by an individual caring for the resident.
  • Causation – the harm caused to the resident was a direct result of the breach of duty by the caretaker.
  • Damages are present because the legal duty was breached and caused measurable harm.

When these four elements are present, a resident may have a valid nursing home abuse lawsuit to claim compensation for medical bills, treatments, possible change of residency, lost wages, property replacements and other damages specific to the case at hand.  A skilled nursing home attorney can evaluate a claim for damages based on the presence of the elements of negligence.  Awards may be higher if it is found that gross negligence played a part in the injury, or loss to the nursing home resident.  A competent South Carolina attorney can assist with a formal complaint against a nursing home caregiver and facility.

Seek legal counsel.

Contact an experienced attorney at the McDougall Law Firm if you, or a loved one suffered injury, or an untimely fatal outcome caused by negligence, or gross negligence while living at a nursing home facility in South Carolina.

McDougall Law Firm, LLC

115 Lady’s Island Commons
Beaufort, SC 29907

Phone: 843.379.7000

Sources.

https://scdhec.gov/health-regulation/health-facility-regulations-licensing-con/medicaid-medicare-certification-1

https://www.scdhec.gov/sites/default/files/Library/Regulations/R.61-17.pdfd

https://www.scstatehouse.gov/code/t44c070.php

https://www.scstatehouse.gov/code/t43c035.php

 

 

 

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