Families trust their loved ones in nursing homes when they require a higher level of care and treatment due to old age or medical conditions. When a loved one enters a nursing home, everyone trusts the staff to do the right thing, but that doesn’t always happen. Learn the signs of nursing home abuse and how to handle protect someone who could be getting hurt.
Special Rules for Nursing Homes
Nursing homes must provide a specific level of care or can be penalized or shut down. Failure to provide a reasonable care and treatment level means patients are suffering and not getting what they need to be comfortable. Review the local regulations for nursing homes and the specific policy manual for the home to understand basic legal rights.
Patients in nursing homes may require the preparation and serving of healthy meals throughout the day, which should also consider specific medical conditions. Failure to feed patients can lead to weakness, illness, malnutrition, dehydration, and even death. Visitors can ask patients about their meals or stay to observe how they are being fed during the day.
Bathing and Cleanliness
The facilities should always be clean and sanitary to avoid the spread of illnesses in nursing homes. Patients should be bathed regularly and turned in bed to reduce the possibility of bedsores. Failure to keep patients and the facility clean leads to sickness and death among the nursing home population.
Handle with Care
Older patients have physical limitations and reduced bone density that require special care and treatment. Patients should be moved in a wheelchair when necessary and always handled with care. Bruising, cuts, fractures, falls, and other physical injuries could indicate nursing home abuse.
Prompt Medical Attention
A nursing home should provide prompt medical attention when patients have health concerns or complaints. Medications should be administered at the proper doses promptly to keep patients in the best possible health. If a patient is lethargic, unhealthy, or shows rapid signs of decline, it could be a sign of nursing home neglect or abuse.
Emotional abuse is as serious as physical neglect and abuse because it makes a patient feel withdrawn and unable to speak for himself or herself. If a patient is uncommunicative or seems fearful, it could be a sign of nursing home abuse. Patients should feel comfortable communicating their needs without fear of verbal or physical ramifications.
Talk to the patient, observe the surroundings, and try to take notes during a few visits. Include dates, times, and circumstances, then find out the recourse for nursing home issues. Be cautious because the patient is the one who could suffer if the complaint is mishandled.
Consult with a Personal Injury Attorney
Nursing home negligence is a serious matter, and often in-house complaints lead to worsened conditions for the patient. Schedule an appointment with a respected personal injury attorney to review the nursing home notes about the conditions the patient suffered. An attorney helps protect the patient and family’s rights to ensure the nursing home is doing the right thing.
People rely on nursing homes to take good care of their loved ones during some of their most challenging days. There is no excuse for nursing home abuse, and it should never be tolerated. Consult with a personal injury attorney today to learn more about patient rights.