When your loved one is living in a nursing home, you expect them to get the best care they need so they can live with dignity and enjoy their life. While it’s difficult to place your loved one in a home, you should be able to trust that it’s for the best and professionals are providing care 24/7. However, some nursing homes are not able to provide your loved one with the care they need. In some cases, your loved one’s health and wellbeing could be put at risk. A Fayetteville nursing home abuse lawyer from McMath Woods P.A. can help you get justice for your loved one.
Learning your loved one is being abused is a terrible situation. You may not know what to do. Contacting Adult Protective Services can help you get your loved one to a safe place. From there, you can seek your legal options.
Before learning more about how our attorneys can help you, let’s look at the different kinds of nursing home abuse and what it can do to your loved one.
How Does Nursing Home Abuse Affect Your Loved One?
Nursing home abuse can take many forms. Sometimes, staff members and other residents are malicious towards a resident. In other cases, the resident cannot get the care they need because the nursing home doesn’t have the necessary resources. However, neither are acceptable.
Abuse can include:
If a staff member handles your loved one too roughly, hits, or shoves them, then the staff member is being physically abusive. You may notice unexplained injuries or constant bumps and bruises that the staff will not discuss.
Mental abuse can include staff members speaking down to your loved one by using profane language or insulting them. If a staff member prevents your loved one from participating in activities and socializing, the isolation can take a serious toll on their mental health. They may develop depression or anxiety.
When seniors are isolated, some caregivers may take advantage of your loved one’s finances. They could steal money or take out credit cards in your loved one’s name. In more serious situations, they may try to gain control of your loved one’s finances.
Staff members who engage in sexually inappropriate behavior toward or around residents are committing acts of sexual abuse. Unfortunately, some nursing homes may not do careful background checks when hiring staff, which allows predators to work around vulnerable seniors. This kind of abuse can cause physical and mental harm.
The Dangers of Elopement
When nursing homes aren’t attentive, residents who are prone to wandering may leave the premises. This can happen when the nursing home doesn’t have enough staff to keep a watchful eye on residents. There should be procedures and protocols to protect residents, especially if they’re an elopement risk. Nursing homes that don’t have careful security measures in place may not catch that your loved one is missing until hours after they’ve left. Seniors who leave their home may not realize what they’re doing. They may become lost, confused, and unable to find their way back.
There are many trip and fall hazards outside. Uneven ground and rocks could make a senior lose their balance and fall. They may hit their head or sustain another kind of injury that prevents them from being able to get up.
It can be terrifying to learn your loved one was able to leave their nursing home and their injuries may take a while to heal. You can turn to one of our lawyers to help get your loved one the justice they deserve.
Questions to Ask Your Loved One’s Nursing Home
Knowing that one home abused your loved one may make you wonder how you’re going to find a safe nursing home you can depend on. Arkansas released a checklist of items your family should look into when deciding on a nursing home. If the nursing home staff cannot answer the questions to your satisfaction, it could be that the home isn’t the safest option.
We’ve separated the questions into categories:
Home Accommodations and Care
- Can your loved one get the care they need at this facility?
- Is the home peaceful? Take the noise level and cleanliness into account.
- Can your loved one get a special diet if they need one?
- Does the home have licensed professionals available around the clock?
- Can your loved one bring personal belongings?
- Will your loved one have storage space available?
Staff and Residents
- Is the staff attentive and respectful?
- Does the home conduct background checks on staff members?
- Does the home plan activities for residents?
- Does the home have equipment for patient safety?
- Does the home offer preventative care? This could include flu shots and vision/hearing tests.
- Are residents and families invited to care-plan meetings?
While these are essential starting questions, feel free to ask the nursing home as many questions as possible if more come to you. When you feel like you have a better idea of how the nursing home runs and how the staff treats the residents, you’ll feel more confident in your decision to have you loved one live there or look elsewhere for a more suitable home.
Get the Representation You Deserve
While there are many ways for a nursing home to be negligent, our lawyers are up to the task of investigating your loved one’s case. We’ll look into records of who was taking care of your loved one, the care your loved one was supposed to receive, their medical records, and more to figure out who acted negligently and how their negligence harmed your loved one.
To get started on your case, give our office a call today. In a free consultation, we’ll review your case for validity and if you decide to proceed with us, we can talk about how to move forward. This process may be difficult and emotional, but you will be giving your loved one a voice and could possibly prevent this from happening to another family.