Federal law guarantees nursing home residents certain fundamental rights, such as the right to a dignified existence, the right to privacy during treatments, the right to participate in social activities, and freedom from abuse and neglect. Unfortunately, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports that around one in six people 60 years or older experienced some form of abuse in community settings over the past year. In many cases, elder abuse is hidden beneath the surface. This can put treating physicians in the best position to discover the signs of abuse.
In some cases, hospital requirements for reporting adverse events may result in the discovery of nursing home abuse. But when does a hospital have to report adverse events in California? The answer depends on the facts of your case. Contact a Silva Injury Law attorney today to schedule a free initial consultation.
What Are Adverse Events?
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) defines an adverse event as an “event in which care resulted in an undesirable clinical outcome—an outcome not caused by underlying disease—that prolonged the patient’s stay, caused permanent patient harm, required life-saving intervention, or contributed to death.” Examples of adverse events include:
- Performing surgery on the wrong patient,
- Performing surgery on the wrong body part,
- Sudden death after surgery,
- Giving custody of an infant to a stranger,
- Leaving a foreign object in a patient during surgery, or
- Development of bedsores.
Adverse events can occur because of human error, substandard care, unforeseen complications, or side effects.
When Does a Hospital Have to Report Adverse Events in California?
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) requires hospitals to report adverse events to CDPH within five calendar days of their discovery.
Additionally, hospitals must report within 24 hours adverse events that are ongoing, urgent, or emergent; threatening the welfare, health, or safety of patients, personnel, or visitors; and sexual assault or allegations of sexual assault of a patient. California hospitals report adverse events through an online portal.
This means that a California hospital must report any adverse events they observe during their treatment of a patient.
Do Nursing Home Injuries Qualify as Adverse Events?
If a healthcare provider reasonably believes their patient is being abused, they are required to report that information. Signs of nursing home abuse may include:
- Untreated injuries,
- Excessive bruising,
- Broken bones,
- Issues with medication, or
- Unwillingness to provide treatment.
If a medical provider sees obvious signs of nursing home abuse and does not report the abuse, they could be liable for the further harm the victim suffers.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries due to nursing home neglect, you may be entitled to relief. And although the road to seeking justice may be long and complex, it is important to remember that you go through the court process alone. Contact an attorney with Silva Injury Law today so we can assist you with your case.
When Does a Hospital Have to Report Adverse Events in California? Contact Silva Injury Law to Find Out
If a loved one suffered injuries as a result of nursing home abuse or neglect, and those injuries were never reported by healthcare facilities, they may be liable for the losses incurred as a result. One of our nursing home abuse lawyers at Silva Injury Law can help determine if your loved one qualifies to bring a lawsuit so they can recover compensation for the abuse they suffered. We pride ourselves on providing our clients with the highest level of legal representation and compassionate advocacy. We can help you assess your potential damages, gather evidence, negotiate with opposing parties; and prepare your case for trial, if necessary.
We are committed to helping our clients secure a favorable outcome in their case. Moreover, we do not charge upfront fees, so you will not pay a dime unless we collect a judgment or settlement on your behalf. Contact Silva Injury Law online or by phone today to schedule a free in-person or remote consultation.
FIND OUT HOW WE CAN HELP
At Silva Injury Law we promote healing through compassionate advocacy. With each case tailored to the individual, we look our for your best interests by evaluating your unique circumstances. Contact us today for a FREE in person or remote consultation.