When most people think of abuse, they envision someone hitting, pushing, or hurting someone else. Rarely do they consider neglect. Yet, neglect is a very common occurrence, especially in nursing homes. Nursing home care may not be physically abuse in the traditional sense. But neglect is often the cause of harm to elderly patients and other living in assisted living facilities. Neglect and abuse are similar in many ways, and require immediate attention.
What is Neglect?
Neglect is lack of proper care or performing actions that cause harm to another. Some of the most common forms of nursing home neglect include:
· Basic Needs Neglect – The basic needs of patients are not being met. This may include shelter, food and water, and general environmental requirements.
· Personal Hygiene Neglect – Patients are not properly cared for and do not get proper daily hygiene care such as brushing their teeth, combing their hair, and bathing.
· Emotional or Social Neglect – Patients are ignored, left alone, or are treated in a malevolent manner.
· Medical Neglect – Patients are not medically treated when required, medications are not properly administered, or patients are not cared for in a way that is required.
Signs of Nursing Home Neglect
Nursing home neglect can sometimes be difficult to discover. There are some common signs that are often associated with neglect and are many of the same as abuse. If you see any of these signs it is best to investigate the matter more thoroughly with the help of a qualified nursing home abuse attorney. The signs of neglect are:
· Malnutrition · Dehydration · Injuries, particularly from falls · Sudden weight loss · Bedsores · Changes in personality, withdrawn behavior · Change in appearance and lack of personal hygiene · Reduced interaction with others · Noted hazards in the patient’s room
Family, friends, and other close associates should be mindful of any such signs. Discuss the situation with the nursing home staff to ensure that proper care is being provided.
Nursing Home Neglect
Nursing home neglect is, unfortunately, very common in nursing homes and long care facilities. Problems with understaffing and untrained workers can facilitate the problem. As a patient ages, he or she may become less able to do some of the everyday functions they were previously able to do. Only then may it become apparent that a patient is being neglected. If you suspect that your loved one is being neglected, do not delay in getting help. Time is of the essence in these types of cases because, sadly, neglect can escalate quickly and patients may not be able to fully recover.
Preventing Nursing Home Neglect
Nursing home abuse and neglect is a growing problem in today’s society. To prevent neglect it is necessary to keep a close eye on your loved one at the nursing home. Take time to speak regularly with nursing home staff and management. Keep track of medical care by talking with the doctor on a regular basis. Take action at the first sign of possible neglect or abuse. If you think that your loved one may be neglected it is best to seek assistance from a nursing home attorney. Contact the experienced attorneys at Levin & Perconti to schedule a free consultation.
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