When you move an elderly loved one into a nursing home, it’s with the assumption that he or she will receive far better care at the facility than at home. After all, nursing homes are equipped to provide around-the-clock monitoring. Residents are also entitled to comfortable accommodations, medication assistance, and social activities.
Just because nursing homes have a duty to meet certain needs, however, doesn’t mean they always do. Sadly, neglect and even downright abuse are alarmingly common in nursing homes around the country.
If any of your relatives reside at a long-term care facility, it is wise to familiarize yourself with the various types of elder abuse so you can take action at the first sign of trouble. Should you notice any of the following, call a nursing home abuse lawyer immediately:
1. Inexplicable Hospitalizations
It is natural for both physical health and cognitive health to decline gradually with age. A sudden change in your loved one’s condition, however, could be indicative of neglect or abuse. This is especially true if it results in an unexplained hospitalization.
If your relative ends up in the hospital but the staff fails to explain why—or only supplies vague details surrounding the circumstances—call a lawyer and ask about commencing a thorough investigation.
Bedsores are especially common among seniors with limited mobility, but they’re entirely preventable in nursing home settings. Staff members can keep pressure ulcers at bay simply by providing mobility aids with sufficient padding and by moving immobile patients several times over the course of each shift. If your loved one develops bedsores, it’s a sign that he or she isn’t receiving adequate attention from the nurses.
3. Dramatic Changes in Mood or Behavior
Any kind of abuse, whether physical, emotional, or sexual, can have a deeply profound impact on mental health. Individuals who were once friendly and outgoing, for example, might seek isolation after suffering abuse. Depression is also common among victims of elder abuse.
4. Poor Hygiene
If your relative appears more disheveled with every visit, it might be due to neglect. While the primary concerns of healthcare providers are medical, they should also prioritize each resident’s overall wellbeing, which means providing assistance with bathing, grooming, and other essential tasks.
Malnutrition is another common sign of nursing home neglect. Not only must facilities provide balanced meals, but they must also provide assistance at mealtime for frailer residents.
Discuss Your Case with a Nursing Home Abuse Attorney in New York
At Leitner Varughese, we’re proud to advocate for nursing home residents and their families. If someone you love was neglected or abused at a long-term care facility, we will use all the resources at our disposal to help you pursue justice.
We represent clients in New York City, Long Island, and throughout New York state. Call 855-585-2969 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free case evaluation with a nursing home abuse lawyer in New York.