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What to look for when suspecting nursing home neglect

When a family member is placed in a nursing home, loved ones are often concerned about their health, safety and wellbeing at the facility. While an elderly or aging loved one could be perfectly safe and well cared for at a nursing home, there is the concern regarding elder abuse and even nursing home neglect. Although some might be over concerned regarding this situation, it is important to understand signs of nursing home neglect or abuse so that action can be taken if spotted.

What should family members look for when they suspect nursing home neglect? Bedsores are common signs of neglect. These often occur when a patient is not moved enough or if they are not fed a proper diet. Bruises from falls are another major sign of abuse or neglect. If an elderly loved one falls at a nursing home it could be a sign of understaffing, unsafe conditions at the facility, or even abuse.

Lastly, if one encounters poor hygiene or bad smells at the facility or on a loved one, then that could designate abuse or neglect. This could be a sign that both a patient and the facility are not being properly cared for and cleaned.

When a loved one is placed in a nursing home facility, it is important to ensure that they have not fallen a victim to nursing home neglect or abuse. The rights of nursing home residents should therefore be protected and proper investigation and assessment of a facility should be completed when there are signs of neglect or abuse.

Those seeking to file a cause of action regarding such a situation should understand their legal rights and remedies. Damages could be recovered for an abused or neglected loved one in a nursing home, and it is important that proper steps are timely taken in these matters.

Source: Berkshire District Attorney, "Elder Abuse," accessed April 10, 2015

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