The horrors of nursing home neglect and abuse are far too prevalent in California. California Healthcare Foundation cites that 150,000 or more Californians are estimated to live in unlicensed assisted living facilities that may or may not be able to care for seniors properly. Your elderly parent or grandparent should not have to be subjected to unsanitary living conditions, neglect and physical abuse in a facility that is supposed to be caring for them. These seniors are loved and valued family members, and it’s important that you are aware of the signs that they are being mistreated. At Johnson Attorneys Group, we work with families to protect the rights and interests of elder family members.
Here are some signs of elder neglect and/or abuse.
We have all heard reports of scammers targeting senior citizens. Exploiters know how to play on the good nature of elder community members who want to help others. When they scheme their way into a nursing home, these criminals attempt to get residents to give them access to funds under false pretenses, misuse their resources, hide money, or straight out steal. It’s important to review your parent or grandparent’s assets on a regular basis. Know where every penny goes and why. If the numbers don’t add up, there may be a problem.
Diminished Personal Hygiene
Nursing home staff members are tasked with assisting elderly residents to manage personal hygiene. This may include hair care, clipping nails, bathing, oral hygiene and other basic personal hygiene items. A common neglect problem is staff members failing to do their job and seniors suffering because of it. Tarnished teeth, unkempt hair, long nails and bed sores may be signs of personal hygiene neglect.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Many elderly patients have difficulty with mobility and may be prone to slip and falls. Nursing home staff members are there to help them to avoid devastating injuries. Things like bruises, broken bones and head injuries are inexcusable considering the point of elderly care is to keep parents and grandparents safe. Injured seniors tend to recover more slowly than young people, and many of these preventable slip and falls can leave them bed-ridden for long periods of time. Be cognizant that serious injuries may be an unfortunate accident. But, it may be an indicator that staff members didn’t exercise proper protocol and care.
Signs of Physical or Sexual Abuse
Abusers can find their way into employment among the most vulnerable community members. Abusers may try to instill fear by using physical pain, psychological manipulation, and coercion. These predators may also inflict unwanted sexual contact on elderly family members. Talk to your family member about how they are being treated. Look and listen carefully for signs of emotional distress. Warning signs of sexual abuse may include bruises around the breasts or genitals, emotional distress when certain staff members are around, exhibiting signs of PTSD, withdrawal from others, sustaining a pelvic injury, developing an STD, and torn or bloody underwear are indicators of deliberate physical abuse.
Work with an Experienced California Nursing Home Attorney
Recognizing the signs of nursing home injury or abuse are necessary to keep family members safe and secure. If you see signs that a loved one has suffered neglect or abuse in a nursing home, it’s vital that you contact and an experienced California nursing home attorney immediately. Call the Johnson Attorneys Group at 1-800-208-3538 for a complimentary case evaluation.