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What Is the Difference Between Medical Malpractice and Elder Abuse?

When it comes to the care of older adults, there are extra steps that must be taken in order to ensure that they remain safe and healthy. However, when this doesn’t happen, both medical malpractice and elder abuse can have devastating effects on those who experience them. But how do you tell the difference between medical malpractice and elder abuse? Do they have defining characteristics you should be aware of? 

If you or someone you know is a victim of either medical malpractice or elder abuse, you might feel confused about what kind of help is available and where you should take your case from here, as each type of incident will require different types of action. The lawyers at Dalli & Marino, LLP can help you determine what type of case you have, along with the type of compensation you may be entitled to.

What Is Elder Abuse?

Elder abuse is a term used to describe the mistreatment of the elderly by a caregiver or someone else in a position of power or authority. Elder abuse or neglect can take many forms, including physical, emotional, sexual, and financial abuse. Cases of elder abuse are often underreported due to the victim’s vulnerability and the abuser’s position of power.

Elder abuse is not only a problem in private homes, but also in care facilities. In both cases, the abuser often has a duty of care toward the victim but they may neglect or abuse their power, leading to serious consequences for the victim. If you suspect that someone you know is a victim of elder abuse, it is important to report it to the authorities and contact an elder abuse lawyer immediately. By doing so, you can help protect the victim and prevent further harm.

Types of Elder Abuse

There are many types of elder abuse, which can be broadly divided into two categories: physical abuse and emotional abuse. Physical abuse is any type of intentional physical harm. This can include hitting, kicking, shaking, or otherwise causing physical pain or injury. Emotional abuse, on the other hand, is any type of verbal or nonverbal behavior that causes psychological distress or trauma. This can include threats, name-calling, humiliation, gaslighting, or social isolation.

Where Does Elder Abuse Happen?

Elder abuse can occur in any setting, but it is most commonly seen in nursing homes. Nursing home abuse is a serious problem because the residents are often vulnerable and unable to defend themselves. Healthcare providers have a duty to provide proper care and protect their patients from harm. Unfortunately, not all healthcare providers live up to this standard. It can also happen in someone’s house, either by a hired nurse or by the victim’s own family.

What Is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice is a legal term that describes when a healthcare professional provides substandard care to a patient, resulting in injury or death. It can also describe situations where a healthcare professional fails to provide the standard of care that a reasonable person would expect in a particular situation.

Medical malpractice can unfortunately happen to anyone, including the elderly. Medical malpractice most commonly takes place in hospitals, and can be the result of the doctor not listening to the patient, accidentally providing a wrong diagnosis, or due to many other factors.

What Is the Difference Between Elder Abuse and Medical Malpractice?

The main difference between elder abuse and medical malpractice is that elder abuse is a type of intentional harm inflicted upon an older adult, while medical malpractice is often unintentional negligence or substandard care by a healthcare provider. 

Elder abuse is intentional and can happen for a myriad of reasons. Medical malpractice, on the other hand, is not intentional but still can cause physical, emotional, or mental side effects. If you or a loved one have questions on what type of case you may have, contact an experienced medical malpractice or nursing home abuse lawyer today.

Contact a Nursing Home Abuse or Medical Malpractice Lawyer at Dalli & Marino, LLP

If you or someone you know is a victim of elder abuse or medical malpractice, it is important that their case be properly investigated. The compassionate and Spanish-speaking lawyers at Dalli & Marino, LLP are knowledgeable in both areas and will be able to help you figure out what type of case you have, along with what kind of compensation you may be entitled to. 

We are here to fight for you and your rights. Schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys today by contacting us online or by calling 888-465-8790.