A resident in a nursing home has the right to be free from verbal, sexual, physical and mental abuse, and any physical or chemical restraint that is imposed for purposes of discipline or convenience, rather than to treat a medical condition. Most nursing home residents have rights set forth in state and federal nursing home regulations. Nursing homes that participate in the Medicare program must follow both state and federal nursing home regulations. A failure to do so may constitute elder abuse under California’s Elder Abuse Act (Welfare & Institutions section 15600, et seq.).
Neglect of an elder person in a nursing home is defined as the failure to provide him or her with services essential to health and safety, such as food, clothing, supervision, and medical care. Depending on the case these failures may be considered neglect or abuse.
Abuse of an elderly individual in a nursing home setting can take a variety of forms, and the injuries range from mild to severe. Abuse can be anything from sexual abuse, physical abuse, and even emotional abuse. There are a large variety of negative circumstances that can occur in a nursing home, which can be defined as abuse.
Several reasons can often contribute to the abuse or neglect of nursing home residents, including poorly trained and unqualified staff, inadequate numbers of staff and reluctance of
residents to report abuse out of embarrassment or fear. Unfortunately, many living in nursing homes are unable to properly communicate instances of nursing home neglect and abuse because of their physical or mental state.
There are many factors that may result in an increased risk of a perpetrator abusing an elderly individual. Such factors include but are not limited to the following:
It is important to ensure that the individuals providing a loved one with care are truly passionate about what they do and feel rightfully compensated for their work. It is also important to support care providers and be sure that they have adequate breaks. After all, taking care of an elderly patient is never easy and can sometimes be emotionally frustrating, as well as rewarding.
All elders are vulnerable to abuse and/or neglect while residing in a nursing home. However, there are certain groups of individuals that are more susceptible than others. Some of the groups that are most susceptible to abuse and/or neglect include the following:
There are many different indications that abuse or neglect may be occurring in a nursing home. The most common indicators of abuse range vary widely, as there are many different forms of abuse and neglect that go on in nursing homes. The most common forms of abuse as well as their most common signs are listed below:
Physical abuse is common in California nursing homes as a result of the influx of patients in recent years. The most common signs of physical abuse within a nursing home appear directly on the elder’s body and include the following unexplained injuries:
Some forms of abuse such as physical abuse, often trigger an emotional response from the elderly individual which may present as the following:
Fortunately, even though sexual abuse can be well concealed, you will have a much better chance of saving your loved one from a sexually abusive environment if you know what to look out for. There are several indicators that may point to the fact that an elder is being abused. The first of these indicators being physical signs of abuse on the elder’s body which include:
Another indicator that a loved one may be suffering from abuse within a nursing home has to do with their healthcare, and includes the following:
Financial abuse against an elder is sometimes hard to recognize, and can go unnoticed. If you have a loved one that is incapable of properly handling their money, it is important to recognize this and take action so that perpetrators cannot get their hands on their finances. One way to combat financial elder abuse is to become a conservator or guardian over an elder that is deemed incompetent. Here are some of the most common signs that financial elder abuse is occurring:
If you have recognized any of these signs of abuse with regard to your loved one, do not hesitate to reach out to Mr. Bryant today. Your hesitation could be the difference in whether or not your loved one is safe, and their abusers are held responsible.
Extensive research should be done when considering a nursing home, but sometimes even these searches into the backgrounds of the nursing homes are not enough. For this reason, in order to ensure that a loved one is not being abused or neglected in a nursing home, it is important to remain in constant contact with the elder. It is also important to visit in person at random times to limit the possibility of apparent abuse or neglect being covered up by the care provider. During in person visits, it is imperative that visitors look for obvious signs of abuse such as the ones listed above. It is also a good idea to take into consideration the environment in which your loved one is residing in. Is the facility clean and organized? Do the staff seem genuinely happy and attentive when dealing with the patients? Finally, do the other elderly patients appear to be in good care and spirits? These are all important things to take into consideration upon visiting, as they may be small indicators of a much larger problem in the nursing home itself. Additionally, there is some publicly available data regarding nursing homes, including local court records and records at the California Department of Public Health and California Department of Social Services.
If you suspect that your family member may be the victim of nursing home abuse notify the nursing home administrator immediately. Additionally, you should contact an experienced elder abuse attorney such as Joel Bryant. The administrator is required to investigate and report it to the state agency. Mr. Bryant is committed to helping bring justice to the elderly and their families. He will also be able to assist you and your loved one navigate the legal process and the courts in order to get your loved one and other residents out of harm’s way, as well as get justice for the suffering your loved one endured.
Nursing home neglect and abuse must be stopped, and the owners of nursing homes are responsible if a resident in their care becomes the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect. If one of your loved ones was abused in a nursing home, contact Attorney Bryant and his team today. It is important for loved one’s to speak out on behalf of their elderly family members because many times, elderly individuals are unable to speak up out of fear, embarrassment, isolation, or diseases such as Alzheimer’s that leave them more vulnerable to being abused. Joel Bryant and his experienced team of San Diego elder abuse attorneys can help recover the compensation you deserve, and ensure that your loved one is no longer abused and that the perpetrators are held responsible for their actions. Mr. Bryant and his team have been one of the top elder abuse firms in San Diego for over 30 years and they are committed to helping you navigate the legal process and get you and your loved one the justice that is rightfully deserved. Reach out today for a free, confidential consultation to see if your loved one’s case justifies legal action. Attorney Joel Bryant is committed to helping the elderly and their families. If you suspect that your loved one has been the victim of neglect or abuse at their nursing home contact Joel Bryant today at (619) 239-7900 for a free legal consultation.
“Joel and his team were the help I needed to approach the nursing home that didn’t take good care of my grandmother. With Joel’s help, my grandmother was fairly compensated for the injuries she suffered as a result of the nursing home’s neglect and abuse.”Andrea C.
“When one of the most tragic events happened in my life, Joel Bryant and Jason Julius were there for me when I needed someone the most. They both were very professional, honest, compassionate, and supportive."Brent R.
“Joel was amazingly accessible, by phone, email and often, in person, and still is. He is a professional with an understanding heart, and a sense of humor. I still feel very fortunate to have had him on my side.”Michelle B.