Legal issues and remedies concerning aged care negligence

PUBLISHED 29 Mar 2020

Australia’s population is ageing and as a result of medication and treatment, average life expectancies have increased dramatically over the last 20 years. Accordingly, more and more elderly and infirmed people will be placed in aged care and respite nursing homes and institutions. The ongoing health of people in such homes is totally subject to the quality of medical services provided by that institution.

Sadly, there are many instances of aged and perhaps infirmed family members at nursing and aged care homes where they have suffered neglect including but not limited to:

  • Mental and emotional abuse.
  • Overmedication resulting in zombie-like states.
  • Failure to diagnose bedsores, infections and physical and emotional injuries to back neck shoulders following falls due to a lack of supervision.
  • Sexual and/or physical abuse including failure to provide adequate and balanced nutrition.
  • Failed to make regular reasonable health checks on an infirmed and aged person following complaints by the patient or family members.
    • This may include not referring them for investigations including CAT scans x-rays and appropriate medical specialists to treat common problems such as diabetes, balancing medication requirements, investigating pain and various physical ailments arising from pre-existing medical conditions or perhaps new conditions due to neglect and falls at the aged care facility.
  • General neglect regarding hygiene that precipitates far more serious problems such as uncontrollable infection and bedsores.

Damages and compensation available for abused aged care victims

Gerard Malouf and Partners are the leading legal specialists Australia wide in relation to medical negligence, aged care, nursing and general health and elder care negligence claims.

Our firm investigates and prosecutes thousands of successful medical negligence claims per year. We cover all upfront costs and disbursements irrespective of whether the case is successful or not. Generally, 98% of our claims are successful and the definition of success is simply not just a win but winning by the maximum margin and achieving justice for our deserving clients.

The range of damages we will bring on behalf of our deserving victims of negligence in an aged and nursing care situation include the following:

  • Significant monetary damages limited to approximately $550,000 – being the maximum payable for pain, suffering and general embarrassment for not only the victim but also perhaps for family members where such a claim is justified.
  • Cost of past and future first-class medical care and treatment.
  • In extreme cases a claim for exemplary damages- damages which go far beyond the normal payment specified above to make an example of the outrageous conduct of the institution in question so as to be a significant deterrent for others in the industry.
  • Comprehensive legal costs so that the patient, aged care victim and/or a family member are not out-of-pocket whatsoever.
  • Where applicable a claim for wage loss assuming the patient has some ongoing residual earning capacity regarding investment.

Do not hesitate to contact Gerard Malouf and Partners, medical negligence and compensation lawyers for an upfront complimentary discussion on the merits of any potential claim not only for the victim of the aged care, medical negligence abuse case but also for family members including spouses, children and perhaps grandchildren that have suffered significant psychological and nervous shock as well as perhaps some monetary loss.

By the way, if the case is a relatively minor issue that doesn’t justify the bringing of legal action, you can make a complaint to the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission phone 1800 951 822 however if you want immediate action to achieve maximum justice in the minimum time concerning serious issues of negligence do not hesitate to contact us.

Call us now on 1800 004 878 to book a free appointment with one of my compensation experts, or email your enquiry.