Nursing home neglect and abuse is often difficult to detect, and families should be on the lookout for common warning signs for physical, emotional and financial abuse.
Common warning signs of physical abuse are:
- Untreated bedsores, pressure sores, wounds, cuts, bruises, or welts
- Abnormally pale complexion
- Bruises in a pattern that would suggest restraints
- Excessive and sudden weight loss
- Fleas, lice, or dirt on or in the room
- Poor personal hygiene, unpleasant odors or other unattended health problems
- Torn clothing or broken personal items
- Bleeding around private parts
- Bloody undergarments
- Bruises around the breast/genital region
- An unexpected look of fear from the elder when aide may be present
Common warning signs of emotional abuse are:
- Intimidation through yelling and threats
- Ignoring the patient
- Isolating the patient from other residents and/or activities
- Terrorizing the patient
- Mocking the patient
Financial exploitation is another form of abuse. An unscrupulous caregiver may:
- Misuse checks, accounts, or credit cards
- Steal money, steal checks, or steal belongings
- Forge signatures
- Authorize withdrawals or transfer of monies
- Steal the patient’s identity
No family is exempt from any of these possibilities. Abuse affects the rich and poor. Suffering sustained by the elderly ranges from financial, to emotional and physical. Abuse escalating to physical can result in severe infections, amputations, dehydration and, unfortunately, death. A lawsuit should be filed on behalf of your loved one to get the justice your family deserves. Compensation may cover the costs of treatment and recovery, as well as compensation for non-financial hardships such as pain and suffering.
If you suspect elder abuse of any kind speak up and demand answers of those in charge.
Feel free to contact me for more information or inquire about a lawsuit.