The decision to put your loved one in a nursing home is difficult. Nursing homes are designed to provide nursing and medical care to injured, elderly, and disabled individuals. The expectation is that each and every facility would act with our loved ones’ best interests and care in mind at all times. However, reports of nursing home negligence and abuse are becoming more and more common. These malpractices in a nursing home are destroying the trust and overall image of an ideal caring facility.
Nursing home negligence has become the most common form of abuse found in nursing homes and facilities, and continues to cause serious issues for families’ loved ones. It can be difficult to identify signs of nursing home abuse, neglect, and negligence due to our loved ones’ medical conditions. Issues such as hearing and vision loss, decline in mental functioning, and reduced or limited physical strength are often present and can make identifying signs of neglect significantly more difficult.
Types of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
- Medical Negligence: This is the most common type of negligence, where due to the action or inaction of the nursing home staff, residents are provided incorrect medicines, develop bed sores from not being moved from a sedentary position, and contract infections and other conditions. The nursing home staff may fail to provide medication on time, or provide incorrect dosages, or ignore pharmacological needs and treatment.
- Emotional or Social Negligence: Nursing home residents often depend on staff members for socialization, or for aid in socializing with other residents. Staff members’ neglect of their residents’ social needs and repeatedly leaving the individuals alone is mentally torturous and has significant negative psychological effects on the residents.
- Neglect in Fulfilling Basic Needs: Food, water, safety, and comfort – all are values we cherish so highly. Too often the neglect of nursing home deprives our loved ones from these basic necessities. Neglect by staff members can include failing to provide necessary food and nourishment, assuring the facility is safe, such as by providing functional locking doors, and providing sheets and blankets to adjust for the changing of seasons.
- Neglected Personal Hygiene: Residents of nursing facilities depend on the nursing home staff to care not only for their medical needs, by their personal and hygienic needs, too. This includes showering and bathing, dental hygiene, and proper sanitary use of restrooms. Neglect results where a nursing home and its staff fail to provide this form of assistance to the residents.
Possible Signs Your Loved One Is Being Neglected:
- Sudden weight loss or dehydration due to poor nutrition.
- Developing bedsores by patients who are unable to leave their bed without assistance from nursing home staff members.
- Weakening and worsening health due to development of infections and additional conditions.
- Lack of bathing or grooming because of a lack of assistance from staff members.
- Damage to beds, wheelchairs, walkers, and other devices necessary to assist your loved one, showing a lack of maintenance by the facility’s staff.
These are only a few common signs of nursing home negligence – others can be identified by remaining diligent and always seeking the best help and accommodations for our loved ones. Nursing homes are often understaffed and overpopulated; however, this does not provide justification for your loved one receiving substandard care. You have the right and ability to stand against any abuse or negligence or neglect by a nursing home that harms your loved one.
Stand Against Injustice
Seeking experienced legal representation is imperative if you or a loved one have been subject to nursing home abuse or neglect. Obtaining proper representation by an experienced attorney is the first step to protecting the rights and interests of yourself or your loved one.
If you or a loved one has been subject to abuse or neglect, contact our office to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys today!