When you move an aging loved one into a long-term care facility, it’s with the assumption that he or she will be treated with dignity and respect. Sadly, abuse and neglect are alarmingly common in nursing homes, and the problem is only getting worse.
In one survey conducted by the World Health Organization, 2 out of 3 nursing home staff members reported having committed abuse within the past year. Even those who live at high-priced, state-of-the-art facilities are vulnerable to physical, sexual, emotional, and financial abuse. Residents might also be subjected to neglect, which can be just as damaging as outright abuse.
If you’re thinking about moving an elderly loved one into a nursing home, you may be wondering if he or she is likely to be abused. Since a significant number of incidents go unreported, it’s impossible to determine exactly how prevalent the problem is; however, abuse in long-term care facilities is certainly more common than it should be.
In one survey, 95 percent of the residents who were interviewed reported that they had been neglected by staff or had witnessed others being neglected. In another study, researchers found outright abuse had occurred in 30 percent of all nursing homes throughout the United States.
What Are the Signs of Nursing Home Abuse?
If your loved one currently resides in a long-term care facility—or will soon—it’s wise to review the warning signs of nursing home abuse so you’ll be able to notice the symptoms of mistreatment and take immediate action. Here are some of the most common signs of abuse:
- Physical Abuse: Unexplained hospitalizations are a telltale sign of physical abuse, as are unexplained injuries. Examples include bruises, lacerations, fractures, sprains, and strains.
- Sexual Abuse: Bruises on the wrists, thighs, and chest are indicative of sexual abuse. Torn clothing, difficulty walking or sitting, and unexplained infections could also be signs of sexual abuse.
- Emotional Abuse: When seniors suffer emotional abuse, they are likely to exhibit changes in their personality. For example, they may experience dramatic mood swings, withdraw from social situations, or isolate themselves from friends and family members.
- Financial Abuse: If your loved one is suddenly unable to meet financial obligations, nursing home staff could be taking advantage of him or her. Giving extravagant gifts to those who are not actually family members or modifying estate plans for no justifiable reason are also signs that a caregiver could be manipulating your relative.
- Neglect: Nursing home residents who are neglected by staff are likely to suffer from malnutrition, dehydration, and bedsores. They may also have poor personal hygiene.
Call 716-855-3761 to Discuss Your Case with a New York Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
If you think an elderly loved one is being abused or neglected by nursing home staff, contact LoTempio P.C. Law Group. We will conduct a thorough investigation and gather the evidence needed to build a claim against all liable parties. Call 716-855-3761 or fill out our Contact Form to schedule a free consultation with a nursing home abuse lawyer in New York.