When placing a loved one in a long term care facility, you expect that they’re in good hands. Some nursing home facilities provide excellent care, however, others abuse and neglect their residents. Statistics show that more than 30% of all nursing homes in the US experience some form of resident abuse and neglect. Nursing home abuse and neglect includes, physical abuse, psychological distress, financial exploitation, malnutrition, sexual abuse and more. Families should watch for the following signs:
Unexplained injuries or bruising
Unexplained bruising or injuries are one of the most common signs of nursing home abuse and neglect. It includes scratches, cuts, broken or fractured bones or dislocated limbs.
Bed sores are a major sign of nursing home neglect. They occur when patients spend an extended period of time in a bed or a wheelchair, without proper attention and care. Bed sores can result in minor or severe wounds, and can also be fatal if left untreated.
Sudden changes in mood or behavior
Sudden changes in mood or behavior in a resident may be a possible sign of nursing home abuse. Behavior and mood changes include withdrawal, anxiety, embarrassment, fear, agitation, anger or depression.
Malnutrition or dehydration
Malnutrition or dehydration occurs when the nursing home facility or staff fail to address resident’s dietary and hydration needs. The signs to watch for are sudden weight loss, weakness, fatigue, paleness of skin, dry mouth, reduced urination, swollen tongue, weakness, and cracked dry lips, and poor health.
Poor hygiene and sanitation
Poor hygiene and sanitation is an indication of nursing home staff negligence. Common signs include soiled clothes or bedding, or unsafe or unmaintained living conditions, improper us of toilet, lack of personal hygiene(uncleaned body and hair, overgrown nails, poor dental care, etc.)
Changes in Finances or Property
Nursing home residents can be exploited financially by the nursing home staff or other residents. Signs of financial abuse to watch for are missing cash or property, significant or unexplained withdrawals, unpaid bills, unnecessary purchases or subscriptions, and sudden changes in power of attorney or wills.
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Note: The information contained herein is for informational purposes only and is not to be considered legal advice.
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