Abuse and neglect are unfortunately common in nursing homes. In 2021, approximately 1 out of six people aged 60 and older endured abuse in care settings.
That said, you can take steps to ensure your friend’s or relative’s safety. Here are four ways you can protect your loved one.
1. Visit your loved one often
Check on a beloved relative a few times a week. Regular visits not only allow a patient to alert you of good (and bad) news, but they also prevent loneliness, especially if your loved one has little or no friends at their nursing home.
2. Get to know some of the staff
It’d be nice if every nursing staff member were kind, honest and reliable. Alas, abusers exist in all sectors, including medical professions. Educating yourself on a caregiver’s personality and behavior helps you determine which individuals are trustworthy and which ones you need to keep a close eye on.
3. Look for signs of abuse
During your visits, check for common signs of abuse with some of them including:
- Physical injuries like cuts or bruises
- Change in behavior, e.g., quieter than usual, appears fearful and withdrawn
- Bank statements have sudden, unexplained debits or expensive items are missing from their room
- Change in weight
4. Remove your loved one and transfer them to a safer care
If the nursing home refuses to address the abuse or punish the responsible parties, remove the patient and take them to a safe place. It is also the time to take action against the facility.
It’s horrible that many nursing homes fail to provide adequate care to residents. Pursuing litigation against them might not only bring justice; it could protect prospective patients from harm, too. If your loved one suffered neglect or abuse at a nursing home, it helps to seek legal guidance.