Swift Intervention For Nursing Home Abuse

In Uncategorized by Garrett, Walker, Aycoth & Olson, Attorneys at Law

Nursing home abuse happens when caretakers mistreat residents who live in long-term care facilities. Whether the harm was intentional or not is irrelevant, as even accidental harm may be considered elder abuse, resulting in physical pain, mental trauma, medical emergencies, or death. Nursing home abuse is a prevalent problem that most people just don’t want to think about. But unfortunately, for those who have senior relatives, it is a reality that they must be aware of so they can take action to protect their loved one immediately. 

What are the nursing home abuse statistics?

Did you know that as many as 1 in 3 senior people will be victims in a nursing home from abuse? Add to the fact that 2 out of every 3 caretakers have admitted to abusing or neglecting a senior resident, based on World Health Organization studies. Knowledgeable lawyers, such as those from Silverman Law Office, PLLC, know that many seniors may be afraid to speak up about being mistreated, out of fear of further abuse, so the rates may actually be even more common than that. 

In what ways may a senior be mistreated?

Abuse can take on many forms, including physical, verbal, and financial. A nursing home staff member may knowingly commit physical injury, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation. Abuse is a serious issue that needs intervention without hesitation, as a senior person may suffer endlessly or lose their lives because of the mistreatment. Signs that your senior loved one may be a victim of nursing home abuse are listed as follows:

  • Withdrawing from loved ones
  • Wounds such as scratches, bruises, bleeding, etc. 
  • Personality or behavior changes
  • Injuries that have no explanation 
  • New prescriptions or increase in dosages (unrelated to a medical condition)
  • Odd transactions or transfers from financial accounts (that could not have been made by the resident)
  • Sudden changes to estate planning documents
  • Refusing help from certain staff members
  • Refusing to take medications, eat, or receive other care
  • Emotional outbursts
  • Appearing on alert or afraid

What causes a caretaker to abuse a resident?

There is no excuse for abusing a senior who lives in a nursing home. Caretakers may be overwhelmed at how many residents they must attend to due to being short staffed, meaning some residents just don’t get the level of care and attention they need. The root cause of being understaffed has to do with high turnover rates and compassion fatigue which can lead to apathy and frustration. With legal intervention from a lawyer, such as the Montana elder law team from Silverman Law Office, PLLC, a senior relative can be moved to a safer place while the caretakers and facility are held responsible through a nursing home abuse lawsuit. 

Senior people deserve to be protected, so if you see that your loved one may be a victim of nursing home abuse, then it is of the essence to take action swiftly before the situation can escalate.