Nursing homes are meant to be safe spaces for the elderly but they can often turn out to be dangerous. Nursing home abuse is a prevalent issue that affects thousands of nursing home residents. Disabled residents are often at a higher risk of being abused. Neglect can be intentional or unintentional action that leads to injury. If you fear your loved one is being neglected or abused our Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney has compiled some warning signs you can look for.
Nursing home staff are required to provide companionship and personal contact with others. Caregivers should have patience, sit and talk with residents, listen and respond, empathize with residents and provide feedback on their concerns. When these are withheld from the resident, it can lead to depression which can cause physical concerns such as not wanting to eat or drink.
One of the most important aspects of care is that your senior receives the appropriate medical care. When they do not they may suffer from further illnesses. Some warning signs to look for are open wounds, infections, and medication errors. For bedridden patients, this can happen if they are not repositioned regularly. An infection can quickly lead to disease, septic shock, and even death if they are left untreated. Medication must be administered in a timely manner and at the right dosage, if it is not this can have severe consequences on the patient. Contact a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney if you fear there has been medical neglect.
Hygiene is an important aspect of all of our lives. In a nursing home, hygiene is even more important as residents are often unable to keep themselves and their environment clean. If the staff does not bathe, brush teeth, or change residents this can cause them to get staph infections and other medical concerns. Other signs of hygiene neglect include:
- Unclipped nails
- Dirty bed covers
- Unclean toilets
- Unchanged diapers
- Dirty rooms
- Unwashed floors
- Unclean bathing areas
Food and water are essential to the health of residents. If these are withheld from residents it can lead to serious medical consequences. Often residents are unable to feed themselves and need assistance. Two ways that nutritional neglect appears in residents are dehydration and malnutrition. When a resident is malnourished they can become weak and become a fall risk and are unable to fight off infections and other diseases. This is a very serious form of neglect and you will need to contact a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney.
Nursing homes will provide group activities to keep residents socializing and entertaining. When a resident is purposely excluded from activities this can cause psychological damage. Residents may be confused, depressed, become aggressive, or self-destructive. They may even enter emotional distress and have negative feelings towards their family and caregivers. While some residents may not be able to participate in all activities due to physical or mental disabilities, when they are excluded from activities that they can participate in this is neglect.
Basic needs neglect
As seniors age, they may need assistance and additional supervision. They may be a fall risk which requires the nursing home facility to place safeguards so the risk of falling is minimized. Some residents will need to be repositioned periodically because they are immobile. There are certain residents that may be prone to wandering and again caretakers will need to take the appropriate measures to prevent wandering and elopement.
Sadly, nursing home residents are preyed upon and can become victims of sexual abuse. You should look for signs of bruising in the genital area as well as bleeding. You should also look for bloody or stained clothing and undergarments. If you see these signs you need to contact a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney immediately.