No one wants to believe that a caretaker would harm their elderly patients. However, with over 16,000 nursing homes operating across the nation, one of the unfortunate results is patients being forgotten, neglected, or even abused. If you’re worried that an elderly loved one is being abused, watch out for these three types of common nursing home abuse, and make sure to report any injuries as soon as possible.
Some caregivers have been reported striking or causing other physical harm to elderly residents. Withholding of medication is also considered a part of physical abuse. This manner of abuse is easier to spot than others. Keep an eye out for unexplained injuries, such as bruises on the wrists or ankles to indicate excessive restraint. Reports of overdose or frequent ER visits could be signs that medication dosages may be being given in dangerous quantities.
There have been cases of elderly residents being scammed out of excessive amounts of money. Caregivers have access to their patients’ bank account information and have been reported for stealing funds, defrauding, or scamming residents out of large sums of money. Warning signs include disappearance of personal property or financial information, sudden changes in bank account amount or missing funds, and changes in wills or power of attorney. Financial exploitation can ruin the financial stability of an elderly resident and leave them bankrupt in severe cases.
Sexual abuse has occurred in America’s nursing homes more commonly than you might expect. This past December, a nursing assistant was charged with sodomizing a 68-year-old resident in an Alabama nursing home. Sexual abuse comes with both physical and emotional warning signs. Report any injuries such as bleeding of the genitals or rectum, bruises on the wrists and thighs, as well as unexpected STIs. An elderly person who has been sexually abused may exhibit signs of depression, anxiety, confusion, or rage.
If you suspect a loved one has been abused in a nursing home, contact us. Over the last 17 years, Pennsylvania and New Jersey personal injury lawyer James W. Sutton, III has built a successful track record of successfully protecting injury victims and their families. We can help you bring negligent individuals and institutions to justice.