For nursing home residents, the line between nursing home neglect and abuse can be very thin. Many residents require close personal attention, and denying them this attention can lead to serious physical and psychological problems.
Nursing homes are meant to be safe, inviting places, where residents can receive the care they need and enjoy the company of those their own age. But pressures on the industry are leading to large-scale acquisitions by conglomerates that put profit before quality of care. In addition, the current administration has lowered fines for nursing homes, weakening the government’s ability to enforce quality control in America’s nursing homes.
When Should You Call a Tucson Nursing Home Neglect Attorney?
If you have a loved one in a nursing home, these changes mean it will be especially important for you to check on his or her quality of care. They also mean that for the foreseeable future, the legal system will be the best way to ensure quality of treatment in nursing homes nationwide. If you suspect your loved one may be experiencing abuse or neglect, consider calling a trusted Tucson nursing home neglect attorney for a consultation.
You’ll not only be ensuring justice for your family, but also helping maintain the quality of care in all nursing homes.
Abuse and Neglect Are Underreported
Serious cases of nursing home abuse and neglect go unreported far too often. According to an alert from the Office of Inspector General in the Department of Health and Human Services, more than one in four serious cases of nursing home abuse aren’t reported to the police.
In one case mentioned in the report, a woman was sexually assaulted and left badly bruised in her nursing home. Federal law requires that events like this be reported to the police within two hours, but that didn’t happen. Instead they cleaned off the victim, destroying evidence of the crime that could have been used as part of an investigation.
The police weren’t notified of the crime until the day after it happened, when the victim’s family reported it. And even at that point, the nursing home told the police that they didn’t need to come to the facility to investigate.
Incidents like this are why it’s important to be vigilant about finding any signs of abuse or neglect.
Our Tucson Nursing Home Lawyers Know the Signs of Neglect
Take care to notice any of these signs of neglect if they arise:
- Poor Hygiene
Nursing home staff should help patients with basic personal hygiene. They should perform daily tasks like helping them get dressed, brush their teeth, clip nails, bathe, and comb their hair. If these things aren’t being taken care of, there may be a serious problem.
- Unsanitary Living Conditions
Nursing homes are required to maintain a safe, sanitary, and comfortable environment. If your loved one’s bedding, clothing, and kitchen areas are not kept sanitary, this could constitute neglect.
Low staffing and high turnover in a nursing home has the potential to lead to cut corners, which can mean residents do not get adequate food or drink. Malnutrition and dehydration can be serious problems for nursing home residents. If your loved one shows any signs of malnutrition, pay close attention.
- Lack of Mobility
This isn’t necessarily a sign of neglect. But if a nursing home resident becomes immobile, it can be a sign of poor treatment. If the immobility is caused by a lack of opportunity to get up and move around, this can constitute neglect.
- Unexplained Injuries
Not all injuries are a sign of neglect. But broken bones, bruises, or head injuries can be a warning sign. If your loved one is ever injured, take time to learn about what caused it.
- Psychological Issues
Psychological issues can be caused by neglect or abuse. They will usually show up in a neglected patient in the form of anger, resentment, or depression. A patient who doesn’t receive enough interaction or attention may be being neglected.
We help our clients in both English and Spanish.
What to Do if You Suspect Your Loved One Is Being Neglected
If you believe your loved one may be suffering neglect, the first thing to do is to remove them from the situation. Your loved one deserves quality care, and you should ensure that he or she gets it. Find a place where your loved one will receive the degree of treatment you have every right to expect.
Once you take care of that, you should consider pursuing legal options. Talk to a trusted legal professional who can tell you if you have a case or not.
Contact Us to Learn More About Your Options
The Khalidi Law Firm has more than 20 years of experience helping families in the Tucson area get the closure they deserve. If a loved one has suffered injury or neglect in a nursing home, contact our compassionate and capable Tucson elder injury lawyers at The Khalidi Law firm. For a free consultation, call (520) 629-9909 today.
In Our Client’s Words: Nursing Home Neglect Case
When I think about my experiences with Thabet and the Khalidi Law Firm, the words “trust, confidence, competence, and communication,” immediately come to mind. As a person who has no prior experience with any legal matters, I had great peace of mind in my representation thanks to the service I received. Through every step of the process, Thabet and his team kept me informed of everything that was happening, explained options, and were also realistic; which I appreciate so there were no “unexpected” outcomes. Additionally, he was caring and respectful to my situation. His entire team knew who I was, stayed on top of deadlines and followed up quickly. Moreover, I felt valued and important. And I felt I was more than just an anonymous client. I don’t believe I could have found better representation elsewhere and would not hesitate to recommend him to my close friends or family, or call upon him again in the future if the need arose.
– Meg Cota