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Published On: Sun, Mar 18th, 2018

Is A Nursing Home Mistreating Your Parent? Hit Them Hard

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Nothing can be as frustrating as realizing that the nursing home you took your mom or dad to is causing them more harm than good. When you imagine the things they could have done, you start getting frightened. Unfortunately, unless you have a keen eye and a probing nature, elderly abuse may skip your attention. At the same time, you should exercise care as some of the changes you see in your parent could only be clues. Your loved one might be suffering from the side effects of a disease and not necessarily negligent care. However, if a hitherto jovial and communicative elderly parent suddenly becomes withdrawn, take that as a red flag.

Why do residents keep mum about abuse?

Seniors get targeted by nursing home staff for a simple reason; they are emotionally and physically weak. Abusers know that nobody can trust the memory of someone who has dementia for example. In any case, the victim cannot remember such an incident. On the other hand, some residents, despite having a sharp memory are afraid of pointing out the culprit. If they do, the caregivers will wait until you leave before mistreating them as punishment. Still, some older adults resign to the fact that no one will act, or perhaps their keeping quiet will translate to less abuse.

What aspects should arouse suspicion?

Out of the concern that you have for your parent, you naturally want the best care for them. Besides, they brought you up with much struggle; you owe them. Regular visits serve to reassure and encourage dad of your love. However, whenever you ask the staff about the progress or nature of care, they avoid or give elusive answers. Common responses like “old people always behave this way” should warrant your concern. Another reason for worry is when you encounter caregivers with a lousy attitude.

Is there something you can do?

Treat any signs of elderly abuse with urgency. Examples of giveaway signs to watch out for include:

  • Dehydration
  • Malnourishment
  • Withdrawal
  • Poor sanitation

Once you prove your suspicions, start documenting them noting carefully the dates, times and intervening measures attempted. Report the incidents to the nursing home and law enforcement agencies for criminal cases. Also, if an elderly parent expresses dissatisfaction and does confirm that the care center treats them negligently, you do have sufficient grounds for litigation. If nothing happens, trust your gut feeling and contact a nursing home abuse attorney; Matthew Sharp specializes in these matters.

There is no point in entrusting a loving and ageing parent to a nursing home only for them to undergo suffering. Keep monitoring their progress, and you will most likely notice when something is wrong. Inquire from the nursing home’s team why things are not the way they should be. If no concrete answers are forthcoming, know that someone is failing. Also, physical and emotional signs can reveal potential abuse. Seek legal recourse to ensure that your dad, mum and the family get their justice. An experienced attorney will represent you and push for adequate compensation.

Author: Mahendra

About the Author

- Outside contributors to the Dispatch are always welcome to offer their unique voices, contradictory opinions or presentation of information not included on the site.

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