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Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect: What’s the Difference?

Jul 29, 2022 - Nursing Home Neglect by

Making the decision to place your loved one in a nursing home is not one that is made lightly. So when the facility you trust to care for your family member betrays that trust by abusing or neglecting your loved one, we are here to help you recover the compensation your loved one deserves. At Cross & Smith, we aggressively advocate for the rights of all of our clients, and we take it seriously when the rights of the most vulnerable are violated.  

Nursing Home Abuse

Abuse of the elderly can occur in several different ways. Some of the most common include:

  • Physical Abuse: Physical abuse may include being kicked, pushed, punched, or restrained with straps or ties. Residents with cognitive disorders are usually more vulnerable to physical abuse.
  • Sexual Abuse: Sexual abuse does occur in nursing home facilities, most often involving residents who are unable to consent to sexual activity. It may include inappropriate touching or actual rape. Residents who experience sexual abuse may even contract a sexually transmitted disease (STD).
  • Mental Abuse: Mental abuse of a nursing home resident may include mocking the resident’s disabilities, as well as humiliating, insulting, or ridiculing the resident. 
  • Financial Abuse: Financial abuse in nursing homes occurs when someone takes advantage of a resident by taking their money. It can take different forms from stealing by forging the resident’s signature to using their position of influence to make the resident change their documents to reflect them as beneficiary. It may also include theft of the resident’s valuables, including jewelry.

Nursing Home Neglect

Neglect differs from abuse as neglect occurs when a person that is charged with providing care to a person fails to do so. Neglect may be intentional or it may be unintentional. Nursing home staff are often overworked, and that can lead to accidental neglect. Common examples of neglect include:

  • Lack of Personal Hygiene: If your loved one has body odor, unclean clothes, and looks generally unkempt, they may be suffering from neglect.
  • Errors In Medication: If your loved one is not receiving all of their medications or is receiving the wrong medications, it may be due to neglect.
  • Malnutrition: Residents may not be given food or water as a result of neglect.

Signs of Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect

If your loved one resides in a nursing home, there are certain signs you should be aware of that indicate your family member may be suffering from abuse or neglect. These indicators include:

  • Over-sedation 
  • Poor hygiene, such as body odor and dirty clothes
  • You are not allowed to visit or have to wait a long time to see them when you visit
  • Bruises, bedsores, and frozen joints
  • Weight loss
  • Missing possessions or changes to the will or bank accounts
  • Fear of speaking when staff is around

Speak With An Abuse & Neglect Attorney At Cross & Smith

An experienced attorney at Cross & Smith can help you recover the compensation your loved one deserves after suffering abuse or neglect at the hands of their nursing home caregivers. You may contact us by calling 877-791-0618 or via our contact page to learn more about your options.

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