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How to Spot Nursing Home Red Flags

Nursing home abuse and neglect are notoriously difficult to identify. Nursing home residents often suffer from physical or cognitive issues that limit their ability to report abuse or neglect. As a result, nursing home cases often rely on observations by visitors and whistleblowers.

Nursing Home Red Flags

Signs of abuse or neglect can come in many forms. First, talk to people about the nursing home conditions. Ask your loved one how the nursing home treats them. They can often describe the conditions they face when visitors are not around.

If your loved one is non-verbal, talk to other residents. They have first-hand knowledge of the conditions in the nursing home and can describe any abuse or neglect they observed.

Finally, talk to staff members. Surveys report that over 80% of staff members have seen another worker emotionally abusing residents, and nearly 25% of them have seen another worker commit physical abuse.

Observing Your Loved One

When you visit, observe your loved one and their conditions. Signs of abuse or neglect include:

  • Dry skin, which suggests dehydration
  • Weight loss
  • Foul smells that indicate infection or poor hygiene
  • Bedsores
  • Bruises
  • Injuries

You should also watch for changes in behavior. Depression, anxiety, paranoia, and jumpiness might also indicate abuse or neglect.

Examining the Facilities

Walk around during visits. Residents are more likely to be neglected if the facility is understaffed. Many residents cannot care for themselves, and someone must be available to assist them with all their needs. 

Observe the cleanliness of the facilities. Dirty facilities can become breeding grounds for diseases and infections.

Watch the interactions between staff members and residents. Abuse and neglect often result from only one or two abusive workers. Watch for anyone the residents avoid.

What You Need to Prove

You need evidence to prove nursing home abuse and neglect claims. While witnesses, particularly whistleblowers, can help, you will need medical records, security videos, and other evidence from the nursing home. 

A lawyer can obtain this evidence during the discovery phase of a personal injury lawsuit. Contact Shrader Mendez & O’Connell at (813) 360-1529 for a free consultation to learn how we can gather the evidence to prove nursing home cases.

Posted in Lawsuit