When a loved one can no longer care for him or herself, families may consider placing him or her in a nursing home. They expect that the nursing home will provide for their loved one’s needs and keep him or her safe.
Unfortunately, nursing home abuse happens all too frequently.
Nursing home review
Before placing their loved one in a nursing home, it may be helpful for them to tour the facility and ask questions. The facility should be clean, well-maintained, have well-trained staff and appropriate space for the residents. The family may also want to ask for references from other families and check whether there are recent news articles about the facility.
The residents should be treated with respect, fed and bathed regularly, allowed to participate in activities and allowed to receive visitors when appropriate. Families can check with the State Department of Health to review whether the facility has been sanctioned or fined in the past for abuse.
Signs of nursing home abuse
Residents may have been abused if they appear agitated, scared or irritable. They may be reluctant to report abuse because they are fearful of retaliation by the staff.
They may show physical signs of abuse such as cuts or bruises, signs of neglect like bedsores or anxiety about being left alone with a caregiver.
Family members should feel empowered to report these instances to the nursing home’s administrator and an experienced attorney can provide guidance as well. Nursing home abuse is unacceptable and there is help available to address it.