When you place your loved one in a nursing home, you are placing your trust in that institution to provide the high level of care your loved one deserves. 88 percent of nursing home residents are satisfied overall with their facility. For families making the difficult decision to moved a loved one to a nursing home, though, it’s still important to evaluate any prospective care center diligently. If caregivers mistreat your loved one, our Parkersburg nursing home abuse lawyers can pursue the damages you and your family deserve.
Choosing a nursing home for an aging relative can be emotional, often requiring a great deal of faith in the professionalism and compassion of the staff.
Steps you can take to vet the quality of care at a facility include:
- Making multiple visits to the nursing home, varying day and time to see the facility at all hours.
- Assessing safety features, cleanliness, and other conditions.
- Observing resident behavior during free time and meals, as well as interaction with staff.
- Noting visible signs of nursing home abuse or neglect, such as bruising or bed sores.
- Speaking with the administrator about the ratio of caregivers to residents, staff turnover, and other issues that could impact the quality of care.
- Contacting the long-term care ombudsman to learn more about nursing homes in the Charleston area.
Once your loved one is settled, he or she should be treated with care and dignity.
Unfortunately, many nursing homes fail to provide this level of care, making it very frightening to trust that your loved one is in good hands. There are an alarming number of nursing home residents across the country who report having either been a victim of or witnessed, nursing home abuse and neglect.
Nursing homes have an obligation to provide a safe and nurturing environment for their residents, including:
- Keeping them safe from mental and physical harm.
- Making sure they are properly nourished and hydrated.
- Adequately tending to their medical needs on a daily basis.
When the staff at a nursing home either intentionally mistreats a resident or unintentionally provides negligent care, the nursing home can be held accountable for these actions in a nursing home abuse lawsuit. The experienced nursing home abuse lawyer at Jim Leach Attorneys at Law can help you make sure your loved one’s rights are protected when they become victims of nursing home abuse and neglect.
Putting Profits Over People
Many nursing home abuse and neglect cases are a result of staffing issues. Often, nursing homes are not adequately staffed, making it difficult to provide the high quality care that each and every resident deserves. Many nursing homes also fail to take the time to make sure that all staff members are properly trained, increasing the likelihood of negligent care. Even more alarmingly, some nursing homes fail to do thorough background checks before hiring staff members, placing a very vulnerable population in danger of abuse.
Unfortunately, all of these situations are part of a greater issue. Many nursing homes have been putting profits over people, and this has resulted in an unacceptable number of instances of abuse. This is against the law, and it is important that offending nursing homes and staff members are held accountable for their actions.
Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Unfortunately, many cases of nursing home abuse go unreported for a variety of reasons. Some nursing home residents are unable to adequately communicate their situation to their loved ones. Others simply stay quiet out of fear that the abuse will get worse. As a result, it is important to look for signs of abuse when you visit your loved one.
Common signs of nursing home abuse or neglect include:
- Bed sores
- Bruises indicative of physical abuse
- Poor hygiene
- Social withdrawal and other changes in behavior indicative of emotional or sexual abuse
- Appearance of being overmedicated.
Staff members who victimize an elderly resident might be even more likely to target someone with Alzheimer’s because the victim’s diminished mental state makes it more difficult for the abuser to get caught.
The symptoms of Alzheimer’s can make it hard for family members to detect signs of abuse or neglect. Typical symptoms patient experience include:
- Memory loss, especially short-term memory.
- Forgetting people and events.
- Confusion about where they are, what day or year it is, and what’s happening around them.
- Difficulty with verbal and written communication.
Patients with Alzheimer’s also experience changes in temperament, including anxiety and depression. If your loved one seems agitated or withdrawn, it’s important to be aware of what might be causing the change. Keep an eye out for physical signs of abuse, unclean or unsafe conditions, or staff mistreating other residents.
Click here to learn more about Reporting Nursing Home Abuse.
If you believe your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, you have rights. Our lawyer will help you get your loved one the assistance he or she deserves, and we will fight aggressively to make sure the negligent parties are held accountable for their actions so that others do not suffer a similar fate in the future.
Please contact our experienced nursing home abuse attorney today to schedule your free initial consultation. Jim Leach Attorneys at Law serves clients in Parkersburg, Charleston, Wheeling, and Morgantown, West Virginia, and Athens, Ohio.