When a loved one is in a nursing home, families often worry about their care. Although most nursing homes work to provide the highest level of care for their patients, there are some facilities that are negligent and even abusive. When a senior is abused in a nursing home, the family has the right to press charges and seek compensation for their loved one.
Federal Requirements Govern Nursing Homes
If a nursing home receives federal funds from Medicaid or Medicare, they are surveyed by the government for compliance. When a nursing home is not compliant, they can be shut down, depending on the severity. Those nursing home patients who are injured by nursing homes often seek legal help at The Florida Law Group.
4 Types of Nursing Home Abuse
Placing a senior loved one in a nursing home is not always an easy task. Taking time to research the facility’s rating is essential. The following are five of the most common types of nursing home abuse.
1. Physical abuse occurs more often than most people realize. Staff members may hit, slap, kick, or push patients. Staff members who physically abuse patients often do so to show their power over the patient. They sometimes act out of frustration and feel their actions are warranted. Nursing home abuse of any kind is never warranted.
2. Emotional abuse is also a common type of abuse in nursing homes. Emotional abuse is considered an act that brings down the self-worth of a patient. This may include belittling the patient, mocking them, or making them feel worthless.
3. Neglect is a form of abuse that can include different types. Negligence may mean not keeping the patient clean or neglecting the cleanliness of their room. It could mean withholding food, water, or medication. It could also mean isolating the patient.
4. Unfortunately, sexual abuse happens in nursing homes across the country. Sexual abuse is considered any non-consensual sexual contact, including rape, sexual harassment, and molestation. Those who abuse seniors in this way often threaten their victims not to tell anyone.
Signs a Senior Is Being Abused
There are signs of elder abuse that should never be ignored. Some of the signs are more subtle than others which is why abuse can sometimes go on for a long time before it is discovered. The following are some of the signs loved ones should look for.
- Unexplained injuries, such as bruising and broken bones
- Frequent accidents
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Changes in behavior
- Weight loss
- Missing property
Should a senior exhibit any of the above, nursing home abuse could be to blame. Those who abuse seniors need to be held accountable for their unlawful actions. Abused seniors need to be immediately removed from the facility and placed in a protective environment.
Many individuals are unaware their loved one is suffering at the hands of an abuser. When individuals place their loved one in a facility, they expect them to be properly cared for and kept healthy and safe.
Abusive nursing homes must be reported and held accountable for negligence. Seniors deserve the highest level of care and respect and anything less than that is not acceptable.
For some, hiring a lawyer is an important step in pursuing responsible parties. Holding them accountable for their actions will prevent them from abusing any other seniors.