There are numerous examples that may be considered neglect in a nursing home. Examples may include when a nursing home fails to provide a resident with basic hygiene or nutrition or fails to provide the proper medical care for the resident’s existing conditions or for conditions that may develop.
Caring for Nursing Home Residents Properly
A nursing home is under an obligation to properly care for its residents, both in fulfilling their basic needs and tending to their medical care. State and federal laws spell out the rules by which a nursing home or long term care facility must operate.
If you have noticed that your loved one is unhappy with the staff at the nursing home or that unexplained bruises or cuts are appearing, you may be dealing with a case of neglect.
Nursing home employees may not intend to cause harm to your loved one. They may feel as if they are doing the best possible work they can do. Even though nursing home staff may not intend to harm your loved one, it can still be considered neglect if the resident injured.
Noticing Signs of Neglect and Nursing Home Injury
Signs of negligence on the part of the nursing home are not always easy to see. If the nursing home employees are attempting to cover up intentional abuse, it may be even more difficult to spot the signs.
However, there are some things you can look for regarding the well-being of your loved one, which include:
- A change in mood or demeanor
- An increase in complaints about the services at the nursing home
- A lack of interest in activities enjoyed previously
- Soiled clothing or bedding
- Unexplained cuts and bruises
- Personal items that have gone missing
- Shortage of nursing staff on the floor
Other signs may indicate your loved one is suffering from neglect or abuse at the nursing home. We have not listed all of them. Always take all concerns about potential neglect seriously.
Neglect of Basic Needs
There are a variety of potential areas of neglect that could occur regarding the basic needs of the resident.
- Hydration: the resident is not receiving enough water throughout the day.
- Hygiene: the resident may be wearing soiled clothing or may not be receiving regular bathing.
- Nutrition: the resident is not receiving meals properly or may be missing important nutrients in his or her diet.
- Personal items: the staff may take away or steal personal items as a punishment.
- Social: the resident may be left alone for hours at a time or is not invited to social activities.
The nursing home may be neglecting areas of basic needs other than those we have listed here.
Neglect of Medical Needs
Nursing homes have an obligation to care for the medical needs of their residents. Those living in a nursing home often have particular medical conditions that require regular care or dosing of medication. Some of the signs of neglect in medical care include:
- Bedsores: the nursing home staff are not caring for a bedridden resident properly if you notice the presence of bedsores.
- Falls: the staff does not help a resident move safely through the facility, leading to a fall.
- Improper medication: the staff does not deliver the medication the resident needs regularly, or the staff gives the resident the wrong medication.
- Monitoring mealtime: the staff is not monitoring residents who have respiratory conditions from accidental choking at mealtime.
- Wandering: the staff does not properly track the location of patients with mental conditions.
Other signs of neglect related to medical care may exist in your case. Do not just assume that these signs will go away on their own. Many times, the nursing home does not respond until a third party intervenes on behalf of the resident.
Creating a Safe Care Environment for Nursing Home Residents
If your loved one’s care is suffering because of what can be considered neglect in a nursing home, it is important to stand up for the resident’s rights.
It is the responsibility of the nursing home to take the steps necessary to maintain a safe environment. They are obligated by law to make sure all of their residents are protected and safe. They must hire employees who will follow the rules and properly uphold the standard of care for residents.
If their actions or inactions are causing neglect for the nursing home residents, they should be held liable. If you suspect neglect at your nursing home, count on the Pintas & Mullins Law Firm to stand up for your rights. Call us today at (800) 842-6336 to discuss the facts in your case.