Nursing home abuse and neglect is a major problem. Many for-profit nursing homes are funded primarily by Medicaid and Medicare patients. To maximize profit margins, the nursing homes increase the number of patients while decreasing the number of staff to care for them. This problem (putting profits over patients) leads to rampant abuse and neglect in West Virginia’s nursing homes. As shown by a Congressional Study, 1 in 3 nursing homes violated government regulations resulting in abuse of residents. Common problems listed in the report include untreated bedsores (also called pressure sores, pressure ulcers or decubitus ulcers), inadequate medical care, malnutrition, dehydration, preventable accidents, and inadequate sanitation and hygiene. Please, read the attached article (, and even more importantly – read the comments.

One commenter wrote the following “People don’t know the half of it, I worked for a private ambulance company for two years that was contracted by the local nursing homes… because of this we weren’t allowed to say anything for fear of being fired(i.e. costing the company contracts…$$) but I’ve seen these nursing home staff treat their patients so poorly that they died directly caused by the staff members. And nothing happens, we’d be back a few days later and those same staff members would still be there, doing what they do best…nothing. For one instance, to try to cover up their mistakes, the staff would call the non emergency line for a transfer rather than 911, then when we would get there an hour later to hear… ‘Oh my gosh the patient isn’t breathing!!!!… I don’t know how this happened, I was just talking to him/her ten minutes ago!!’ My response would be, ‘That’s odd, because judging by the rigor mortis set in, this patient has been dead for hours. You must have been talking to them in the afterlife’ Then they would run out of the room and disappear knowing they were caught in their lie. We’d report it to our company and… nothing happens, no consequences, just swept under the rug. Swoosh Swoosh swoosh we don’t see a problem here… I’d rather set my family members a drift on an ice flow that to ever consider putting them into a nursing home…Ever!!

Goddard & Wagoner represents residents injured by nursing home abuse and neglect. We also represent family members who lose loved ones as a result of nursing home medical malpractice. Legislators are currently trying to protect these for-profit nursing homes by limiting the damages that can be imposed. Such “protections” ignore the real danger – the danger that exists for our elderly, who oftentimes don’t have a voice to protect their very safety. As long as nursing homes choose to understaff, ignore their residents, and put profits over patients, Goddard & Wagoner will fight to right the wrongs of nursing homes throughout West Virginia.

Whether your loved one suffers from bedsores, malnutrition, dehydration, falls, infections, or wrongful death, Goddard & Wagoner is ready to help. But why should you call Goddard & Wagoner? Here are few reasons:

Not every lawyer is prepared to handle a medical malpractice case. These cases are much more complicated, expensive, and require a level of skill to understand the medicine. The lawyers at Goddard & Wagoner have been handling medical malpractice and nursing home abuse and neglect cases for over 15 years.

First, whenever considering a nursing home abuse and neglect claim, the lawyer must be familiar with the the West Virginia Medical Professional Liability Act (or MPLA, codified at W. Va. Code § 55-7b-1 et seq.). The lawyers at Goddard & Wagoner have given presentations to health care providers and other lawyers regarding the ins-and-outs of the MPLA.

Second, lawyers must have a familiarity with the medicine. Having worked on these cases for over 15 years, the lawyers at Goddard & Wagoner have gained significant knowledge about many aspects of medicine.

Third, our lawyers have worked with many experts in a variety of medical fields. All experts are expensive, and our firm pays all of the upfront costs of your lawsuit. We don’t get repaid unless we get money for you.

Fourth, our lawyers have tried dozens of cases in state and federal court. While we try to settle all of our cases for a reasonable sum, if the defendant refuses to negotiate, then you will be glad you have lawyers who are not strangers to the inside of a courtroom.

Fifth, our lawyers have been recognized for their abilities. Goddard & Wagoner has been named one of the Best Law Firms in America by U.S. News & World Report. Dave Goddard and Eddie Wagoner have been recognized by organizations such as Best Lawyers in America, SuperLawyers – Rising Stars, National Top 40 Under 40, Nation Trial Lawyers Top 100, and Chambers USA.

If you or a loved one has suffered as a result of nursing home abuse and neglect in West Virginia, eastern Ohio or southwestern Pennsylvania, call Goddard & Wagoner at (304) 933-1411. The consultation is free and there is no obligation. Sometimes, just talking to someone who can answer your questions can be a big help. And we are here to help.