Nursing home abuse and neglect occur every day in facilities around the country. Abuse occurs each time a nursing home patient is purposefully injured, intimidated, or harmfully deprived. Neglect occurs when a patient is not given the care needed to keep the person free of pain and injury.
If your loved one currently lives in a nursing home, you may be concerned about whether or not he or she is being cared for properly. Here are a few indications of abuse or neglect to help you recognize when your loved one is living in unsafe conditions.
Repeated falls, broken bones, and head injuries may not be coincidental. If your loved one never sustained these types of injuries before becoming a patient of the nursing facility, some form of abuse or neglect may be occurring.
Trauma-based injuries may result from neglect if proper oversight and assistance are not provided as the patient attempts to ambulate. However, the injuries may also be due to abusive actions, such as physical blows.
Extreme Weight Loss
Weight loss is not always abnormal. As a person becomes acclimated to a new diet or a new place of residence, the individual may lose a bit of weight. However, extreme weight loss that appears progressive may be due to food deprivation or an inappropriate diet.
If your loved one asks for food or water during your visits, it could be a sign that they are not receiving adequate care. You can ask the loved one about the level of care, but it may be difficult for the person to respond, depending on his or her physical and mental state. Thus, if you suspect a problem, speak with a nursing home lawyer.
Lack of Personal Cleanliness
If your loved one appears soiled or unclean, there could be a problem with neglect. A nursing home patient may require regular garment changes. However, if your loved one seems to be soiled on a regular basis and the staff does not provide clean changes of clothing in a timely manner, the staff may be negligent.
Bed sores occur when a person is left in the same position for a prolonged period. Patients who are confined to a bed or have difficulty moving should be regularly repositioned to prevent pressure ulcers from forming.
Bed sores that grow in size, severity or number should be investigated. The patient's condition may be due to neglect or abuse.
If you suspect that your loved one is being neglected or abused by his or her nursing home staff, contact the office of a nursing home lawyer to schedule a consultation. For more information, contact a business such as Reed Law.