How to Identify Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

When people place their loved ones in the care of a nursing home, they do so with the hope and expectation that their loved ones will be properly cared for. Indeed, the law requires that nursing homes provide their residents with a level of care that will safeguard their health and make them as comfortable as possible. However, not every nursing home meets this standard, and it is essential that you recognize the possible signs that your loved one is suffering from nursing home abuse or neglect.

One of the most common signs of abuse or neglect is the appearance of bed sores, or pressure ulcers, as they are more formally known. Bed sores are caused by continuous pressure being applied to the same area for a prolonged period, such as by a person being left in a single position in their bed. Bed sores can also be exacerbated by excess moisture, such as might occur if human waste isn’t cleaned up, or by malnutrition. As a result, bed sores are almost always a sign that a person is being abused or neglected.

Another common sign of abuse and neglect is unexplained weight loss, as might occur if a person isn’t being regularly fed. While weight changes can be the result of other factors, such as a change in medication, it is the duty of medical professionals on staff to monitor their physical health and ensure that their medications aren’t having adverse effects. Thus, any sudden weight loss or change in appetite is potentially a sign of neglect or abuse on the part of the staff.

Finally, be aware of any cuts, bruises or other injuries that appear on your loved one’s body without explanation. While it is possible this is the result of direct physical abuse by the staff, more commonly it is the result of nursing home residents falling out of bed or walk somewhere without adequate support. Nevertheless, staff are supposed to be aware of their residents’ needs and ensure they do not fall out of bed or attempt to walk on their own if they have mobility issues. Thus, even a relatively benign injury can be a sign your loved one is the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect.

If you or a loved one is suffering from abuse or neglect while under the care of a nursing home or assisted living facility, it’s important to get the legal representation you need to remedy the situation and get compensation for the harm you and your loved ones have suffered. The lawyers at Levine and Slavit, PLLC are experienced in representing New York City and Long Island residents in nursing home abuse and neglect cases. To schedule a free consultation, contact our New York City nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys at (212) 687-2777 or for our Long Island nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys call (516) 294-8282.

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