The fear of malpractice is one reason why fewer doctors are taking nursing home patients

“Doctors who treat nursing home patients also face the risk of a suit alleging ‘elder abuse.’ If the patient’s in pain, for example, a doctor who’s overly cautious or overly generous about prescribing pain medication could be charged with elder abuse. ‘Every day,’ says Reznick, ‘we see newspaper or TV ads by plaintiffs’ attorneys seeking cases of nursing home neglect or abuse.’

Compared to malpractice suits, elder abuse claims can present greater legal dangers: While state laws vary, such claims may not be limited by caps on non-economic damages; they’re more likely to result in punitive damages; and, worst of all, they may not be covered by your malpractice policy.”

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