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Queens New York Legal Blog

Can you prepare your home for your recovery from surgery?

When you are told that your treatment plan is going to include surgery in New York, it may be difficult to wrap your head around at first. Additionally, you want to be sure that you select a surgeon who you trust and who will be able to perform your operation without causing further damage or leaving you at risk of unnecessary injury. 

One of the ways that you can advocate for your health is by working regularly with your health care provider to find out what your limitations will be during your recovery. Preparing yourself ahead of time is critical to your ability to come home and transition smoothly into healing and regaining your overall health. According to Web MD, some of the things you can do to outfit your home for a productive and safe recovery include the following:

  • Guaranteeing that there is adequate lighting.
  • Wearing footwear that will reduce your chances of tripping and falling. 
  • Modifying your sleeping arrangements so you are close to a restroom.
  • Eliminating unnecessary clutter that could become a hazard. 

With changes to views about LGBTQ, elder care is complicated

The focus on improving the quality of care for elderly dependents in New York has been a concern for quite some time now as with many other places around the nation. As people age and become incapacitated, they rely on caretakers to help them with day-to-day needs, as well as help with managing finances and medical decisions among other things. However, with a growing number of LGBTQ individuals, many people are beginning to question how these identities could affect elder care in the near future. 

Many experts would agree that the elderly are already vulnerable. Because of their age, diminished mental capacity, reduced physical abilities and general dependence, they are at a much higher risk of being abused by someone, especially those caring for them. A growing number of LGBT baby boomers who have been dubbed the "Stonewall Generation," are now entering into care facilities and the concern is that their sexual orientation could make them even more vulnerable than their peers. This is especially the case if those individuals end up in a care facility where the staff is predominately conservative. 

When to visit an urgent care center

With more and more urgent care centers popping up all the time, many people seeking medical care in New York seem to be choosing these clinics for treatment of their medical needs. Patients appreciate the convenience factor and decreased costs that they provide, but you need to be aware that there can be some downsides. The law firm of Futterman, Sirotkin & Seinfeld, LLP understands the potential for urgent care errors. 

According to Time magazine, between 2008 and 2015 visits to urgent care centers by Americans with commercial insurance increased by 119%. Consequently, there was a decrease in patients visiting traditional hospital emergency rooms. With this great a surge in visits comes the potential for medical errors and misdiagnoses at these freestanding medical centers. 

How prescription errors happen

When you need to take medication for either a chronic illness or an acute one, like many New Yorkers you run the risk of being a victim of a prescription error. These mistakes may come with minor or dire consequences, and in some cases can even result in death. Here at Futterman, Sirotkin & Seinfeld, LLP, people often ask us how prescription errors can happen. 

Forbes points out that there is a high rate of these errors with them occurring between four and eight million times out of the four billion prescriptions that are filled each year. You may wonder how they can happen at all when the stakes are so high, but in actuality there are very different reasons for it. The most obvious is when there is an error on the part of the prescriber, such as:

  •        Writing an incorrect dosage amount 
  •        Making a decimal mistake
  •        Giving the wrong prescription to a patient
  •        Confusing which medication goes to which patient 

Advocating for your loved one inside of a nursing home

Once you have decided to follow through with putting your loved one inside of a nursing home in New York, you may feel a sense of urgency to continue to protect his or her well-being. At Futterman, Sirotkin & Seinfeld, LLP, we understand the hesitations that people have when turning the care of their elderly family member over to someone else. 

Perhaps the most important thing to remember is that just because you have decided to enlist the help of a nursing home facility in caring for your family member, does not mean you are relinquishing your rights to protecting him or her. You and the facility you have chosen can function as a team in caring for your family member and providing compassionate care and assistance with day-to-day needs. 

Getting prepared for a surgical procedure

When people first receive word that they need to have surgery, the initial thought may be daunting and unsettling. As they proceed with their treatment plan, people should be in regular communication with their health care provider in New York to receive information about what the surgery will entail, what they should anticipate in terms of recovery and how the surgery will contribute to accomplishing the objective of improving their well-being. 

One way that people can increase their chances of a productive procedure and reduce their nerves and uneasy feelings is to plan ahead. In preparation for the surgical procedure they will be receiving, people should proactively do things that will help their body to be ready and responsive to what is going to happen. 

Physician burnout a factor in medical malpractice

With medical errors contributing to so many deaths, you may wonder how this happens. Doctors go through years of intense education and must follow so many laws. What is causing so many harmful and deadly mistakes to occur?

Common reasons include poor communication among staff, inaccurate record keeping, improper training and outright neglect of standard practice. However, a factor that may be flying under the radar is physician burnout.

What are the signs that your loved one is being mistreated?

When you make a decision to place your loved one in a nursing home facility in New York after considerable thought, you are turning the care of your family member over to highly trained staff who are committed to patient safety, happiness and well-being. Guaranteeing that your loved one is being treated accordingly and is both comfortable and thriving is critical to making sure that his or her experience is as effective as possible. 

Unfortunately, there are stories of elderly people around the nation who have been neglected and abused while residing in a nursing home. Your ability to protect your family member from mistreatment can be supported by your efforts to learn about the signs that indicate that mistreatment is happening. According to nextavenue.org, some of the warning signs to look for include the following:

  • A decrease in your family member's mobility resulting from sitting or lying in bed for excessive periods of time with no movement. 
  • A noticeable decline in your family member's hygiene including dirty clothing, matted hair and a generally unkempt appearance. 
  • A visible change in the demeanor of your family member and his or her response to people.
  • An environment that is being neglected and is posing a threat to your family member's safety by being ill-maintained and unsanitary. 
  • Emancipation and other health-related issues stemming from your family member's not getting enough nutrition. 
  • Suspicious injuries that your family member does not have an explanation for. 

Man suffers permanent paralysis at the hands of hospital staff

Because understanding medical conditions and being able to make correct diagnosis requires both knowledge and experience, many patients in New York rely heavily on their health care provider to be able to do just that. When they are experiencing an injury or suspicious symptoms that are interfering with their comfort, often the first thing they will do is contact their doctor for help managing and treating what they are dealing with. 

For one Colorado man, this plan went awry when the hospital staff who were treating him failed to recognize critical injury before releasing him to go back home. The incident began when the 63-year-old man lost his footing and fell, striking his face on some furniture. Immediately after his fall, the man sought medical treatment at a local hospital. Staff members helped the man but released him to go home when he had a serious spinal cord injury. The overlooked injury ultimately ended up paralyzing the man. 

Pros and cons of cameras in nursing homes

For many families in New York and around the country, the need to provide care for an aging relative can be a source of concern. On top of finding a facility that offers the level and type of care needed for a loved one's situation, there can be worries about the safety of a resident. Elder abuse and neglect are real problems in today's society and the desire to guard against this has led many people to find ways to monitor their relatives in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

One way that some families have attempted to prevent their relatives from becoming the victims of neglect or abuse is by installing cameras in their rooms. A social worker from the University of Washington conducted a blind survey of more than 270 care facilities around the nation to take a closer look at the potential pros and cons of these monitoring cameras.

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