When your loved one is under the care of a nursing home, there can be cases that your loved one is abused or even neglected. This is the last thing you expect from a professional facility whose primary focus is to care for our seniors. If your loved one is a victim you will need to take immediate action and contact a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney.
Identify the signs
The first step in holding negligent parties responsible for their actions is identifying the signs of possible abuse or neglect. Some of these include:
- Use of restraints
- Unexplained mood changes
- Isolation or withdrawal from others
- Becoming nervous or fearful around certain caretakers
There may be several other signs and in some cases, the victim may even express the abuse to their loved ones.
What to do if you see signs of abuse
There are several things you should do if you suspect abuse or neglect. You will need to discuss your worries with your loved one. You should document everything from the dates and times when you noticed the signs to photographs of physical abuse. You should also report the abuse so there is further documentation of what is happening in the facility. You should first file a grievance with the facility and if it is not resolved file a complaint with a state agency. You will also need to contact a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney.
One of the keys to proving nursing home abuse is medical records. These documents will have detailed explanations of care and will detail every interaction between staff and the victim. In these records, there will be documentation of unexplained injuries, medication given whether it was necessary or unnecessary, and more.
History of complaints
As we mentioned filing a complaint serves as evidence that there were concerns with care prior to filing a lawsuit. It also shows that the facility was made aware of the issue and did nothing to resolve it.
Photos and videos
As any Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney will tell you, photographs and video can go a long way in a case. Whether it is photographs of the living arrangements or the physical injuries these will become vital to the case. They will show the judge and others what your loved one had to endure. Videos are also critical pieces of evidence. The facility may have cameras that captured the abuse or neglect. Since this would implicate the facility they may not be too keen on providing this to you but a Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney will work diligently to obtain the records.
We can collect witness statements from other residents, visitors, and even staff that will help to corroborate the abuse or neglect. If the victim is able to speak on their circumstances this can also be essential to the case.
Lastly, our Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney will request state records on the facility. This can help to establish a pattern of abuse or non-compliance within the facility. Citations to the facility will also be helpful to show the negligence of the staff.