Top 5 Red Flags Indicating Nursing Home Abuse
Moving your loved one to a nursing home likely is one of the most difficult decisions you will ever make. Even when no reasonable alternative exists, you nevertheless may find yourself constantly worrying about the care he or she is receiving. Unfortunately, your concern may be justified.
The National Center for Victims of Crime reports that in 2013 alone, 10,000 abuse and neglect complaints were filed against nursing homes nationwide. The number rose to 14,000 complaints in 2014. In some cases, Frederick MD nursing home lawyers may need to be called.
Types of Abuse
Nursing home abuse complaints break down as follows:
- Physical abuse – 27.4%
- Resident-on-resident abuse – 22.4%
- Psychological abuse – 19.4%
- Gross neglect – 15.3%
- Sexual abuse – 7.9%
- Financial abuse or exploitation – 7.9%
What to Look For
Each time you visit your parent, be alert to the following red flags that could indicate that your parent is suffering from abuse:
- Mobility loss
- Poor hygiene
- Poor nutrition
- Poor attitude
Under no circumstances should your parent ever exhibit any of the following injuries:
- Broken bones
If he or she does, take immediate action. Insist on speaking with not only your parent’s regular caregiver(s), but also the nursing home administrator and your parent’s doctor. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and demand answers regarding what happened and how it happened. You may also wish to consult local Frederick MD nursing home lawyers experienced in handling nursing home abuse cases.
2. Mobility Loss
Even if your loved one suffers from a condition such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, the nursing home should not allow him or her to lie in bed all day. Rather, they should encourage him or her to walk as much as possible and help him or her do so safely. A noticeable loss of mobility is a definite indication that nursing home employees are not adequately doing their jobs.
3. Poor Hygiene
Your loved one should always appear neat and clean, both in body and in dress. His or her hair should be clean and combed, and his or her fingernails and toenails should be clean and properly trimmed. You should detect no mouth or body odor. His or her room and bathroom should be clean and uncluttered, with no sign of mold, dust or other unhealthy conditions.
4. Poor Nutrition
Your loved one should look reasonably well fed and well hydrated. Pay particular attention to any rapid weight loss or if he or she complains about the lack of tasty food and drinks.
5. Poor Attitude
If your loved one seems to be depressed or unwilling to talk with you the way he or she normally does, this could be a sign that he or she is experiencing psychological abuse by nursing home employees or residents. Again, try to get to the bottom of the problem, don’t hesitate to file a complaint if you feel one is necessary, and possibly contact Frederick MD nursing home lawyers.
Frederick MD nursing home lawyers can help get you the compensation you and your family deserve. Our attorneys have settled more than 10,000 cases since 1993. Contact the attorneys at Cohen & Cohen today at (202) 955-4529 for a free case evaluation.