Recent studies show that nearly 1 in 3 nursing homes are guilty of neglect or abuse. Instances of neglect increase in facilities with a low staff to resident ratio. Overworked aides and understaffed facilities simply cannot provide quality care for residents, which leads to neglect. So what are the signs that your loved one is a victim of neglect?
First, a decline in physical or oral hygiene is a sign of neglect. For residents that are unable to perform basic needs, nursing home staff are responsible for bathing, grooming, and dressing. If you notice consistent bad breath, dirty clothes, or disheveled appearance of your loved one whenever you visit, approach the staff. This is an indicator that the staff is not attending to basic duties.
Second, a sharp increase or decrease in weight. An decrease in weight may indicate that your loved one is not being provided regular meals. A sharp increase in weight may indicate a medication complication. When staff are overworked, they more likely to make mistakes with prescriptions.
Finally, bed sores are an immediate sign of neglect. Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, result when a resident remains in one position for a long period of time. Nursing home staff have a duty to prevent this type of injury by repositioning residents, making sure clothing and bedding are dry, and checking on residents regularly. If you see bed sores, something is more than likely wrong.
If your loved one has been injured in a nursing home or assisted living facility, it is very important that you call and speak to one of our experienced injury lawyers today.