When our loved ones get old, it is a common practice to either have them move in with you, or into a nursing home. Nursing homes are expected to care for the elderly, providing them with the attention and treatment they both need and deserve. However, it is all too often that nursing homes neglect to fulfill their duties as they should. This is known as nursing home abuse, and it remains an important issue today, despite attempts by the government to regulate it.
In order to properly investigate nursing home abuse, one must first attempt to determine and categorize what kind of abuse is taking place. Nursing home abuse can include physical harm, sexual assault, verbal harassment, emotional harassment, and financial or material theft. Further, neglect is typically considered to be a form of nursing home abuse.
It is not always easy to tell when nursing home abuse is occurring. However, the following are some red flags that should raise suspicion:
- Injuries that go unexplained, including but not limited to bruises, broken bones, scars, and sprains
- Unexpected, emergency medical treatment
- Excessive seclusion or restraint
- Unkempt facility and living space
- Humiliation of the patient
- Missing personal belongings
If you witness any of the following occurring in the nursing home you and your family use, it is important to investigate further. If an investigation doesn’t occur and these abusive practices go on, the consequences may entail the following:
- Minimal medical care
- Avoidable accidents
- Poor hygiene and sanitation
The Steps To Take
If any of the above signs are detected, it is important to launch an investigation into this nursing home. It is a serious accusation, with potentially deadly results for the victim. To investigate, first check with other residents who seem coherent. Corroborate the story, and see if any individuals are repeatedly named. Then collect all medical records, photos, prescriptions, and injury reports on the patient(s). If you feel that the victim is in danger, remove them from this home as soon as possible. After they have been relocated, contact the appropriate state agencies and authorities. The district attorney can then file charges against the facility.
Contact A Personal Injury Attorney
If you believe a loved one or friend is the victim of nursing home abuse, it is imperative to immediately take action. Contact a personal injury attorney that specializes in nursing home abuse. They can help you decide the best course of action for your case.