Grandparents and other elder members of the family are treasured in many cultures. They are well-respected and well-taken care of as they are considered seniors in the family. Family members often seek out their opinions and advice on many matters. However, because of their frail nature due to their old age and their health condition, most families opt to put them in nursing homes so they are taken care of by professionals.
Unfortunately, not all nursing homes are created equal. While some are doing a good job at taking care of the elders, some are not even trying. Some elders even experience abuse at the hands of their caregivers while in the nursing home.
If you suspect that a family member is experiencing abuse in their nursing homes, it is time to call a nursing home abuse lawyer.
Here are some signs you should look before hiring a nursing home abuse lawyer:
Patient or resident has poor hygiene
One of the basic needs of an elderly in a nursing home is to be cared for, especially with regards to their hygiene. This means that part of the tasks of the staff at the nursing home is to care and assist the patients in maintaining their hygiene.
For example, nursing homes should make sure that their patients or residents are bathed, changed and their personal hygiene is maintained. If you visit your parents, relatives or friends in a nursing home and you notice that they have not been bathed or that they are starting to smell, then you should see it as a red flag for abuse.
Patient or Resident is withdrawn
There could be a number of reasons why a resident or a patient in a nursing home is withdrawn. Since elders are more prone to sickness, being withdrawn could be an effect of not feeling well.
However, if it is unnatural for the elder to be emotionally withdrawn and show signs of abuse, then the withdrawn emotion could be due to more than just an illness. It could also be due to emotional and psychological abuse.
Patient or Resident is Dehydrated and Malnourished
Losing weight is normal as you age. However, suddenly losing a lot of weight upon entering the facility is something to be concerned about. This is very important as it could lead to malnourishment and other illnesses.
If the staff is unable to feed their patients with food and drinks that have the vitamins and nutrients that their body needs, then they become more susceptible to malnourishment and dehydration.
If the staff is unable to feed them properly and on time, then they are already neglecting their duty. If the patient or resident is harmed due to the negligence then you should definitely call a lawyer.
Staff is unable to respond to your inquiries
One of the responsibilities of the staff in a nursing home is to monitor the health and general status of their residents or patients. All these are documented and compiled by the staff for reference and to address any problem that may arise.
So when a family member asks questions regarding the health or the status of a resident or patient, they should be able to answer. When you notice that they are unable or not interested in answering your questions, then that should be a sign.
Unsanitary and Hazard-Filled Living Conditions
Cleanliness is important for any nursing home. Every nook and cranny must be clean because elderly patients are already immunocompromised due to their age. Thus, to lessen their chances of getting sick, it is important that they are not exposed to unsanitary conditions.
A good nursing home should also be well-maintained so that it won’t pose a danger to its residents. These are especially dangerous for elderly people. Thus, nursing homes should be extra careful in identifying these hazards and making sure that they are fixed. Failure to provide a clean and hazard-free place to reside means that they are neglecting their duty.
There are many good nursing homes that lovingly care for their residents and patients. However, there are also some that don’t care for their jobs at all. So it is imperative for you to visit them and make sure that they are not displaying signs of abuse.
Abuse may not be present when you only see one of the signs but a combination of some of them. This will lead you to the conclusion that your loved one may be experiencing abuse in the hands of their caregivers in the nursing home. In this unfortunate circumstance, you should already hire a nursing home abuse lawyer.