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Many Massachusetts Nursing Homes Receive Low Ratings

Sending a relative to a nursing home may weigh heavily on a family. People try to pick a home that they trust and that will enhance the quality of their relative's life. Tragically however, a study by Medicare.gov shows a surprising picture. The study found that almost one third of nursing homes in Central Massachusetts scored below average for quality. Making many families worried about possible nursing home neglect.

Focus of the Study

The numbers may come as a shock to those who thought they were doing the right thing for their elderly family members. The study looked at four factors when computing an overall score for the nursing homes. These factors are nurse staffing, health inspections, RN staffing and quality measures.

The study, however, is not a replacement for visiting the actual nursing homes. People looking at nursing homes with their elderly relatives should always tour the home and look for warning signs themselves. Warning signs of nursing home negligence or elderly abuse can be found with a simple tour and the ability to ask questions of the nursing home staff.

Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

Elder abuse happens not only in private homes but in nursing home facilities as well. When the time comes for a person to go into a nursing home, their physical and mental states may be weakened, which makes them more susceptible to nursing home abuse and neglect because they may not be able to stand up for themselves.

General signs of abuse to look out for are changes in the personality or behavior of the person as well as tension or arguments between the person and the nursing home staff. Some types of abuse are rather self-explanatory and visitors to the elderly person may find bruises, bed sores, scratches or other signs of physical abuse on the person's body. Other types are harder to find.

Elder abuse happens every day. Massachusetts residents should not only pay attention to the ratings of the nursing home facilities provided by the Medicare survey, but look for warning signs themselves.

Source: GoLocalWorcester, "Nearly 1/3 of Central Mass Nursing Homes "Below Average"

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