When choosing a nursing home for a family member, you assume the staff will treat your loved ones with the respect they deserve.
However, nursing home abuse and neglect are on the rise.
Many nursing homes do not pay decent wages, leading to many overworked, underpaid, and frustrated staff members.
Common Types of Nursing Home Abuse
There are four main types of nursing home abuse to watch out for in Georgia—physical, emotional, sexual, and financial abuse.
Talking with a Georgia nursing home neglect attorney will help you determine what types of abuse your loved one’s caretakers might be perpetuating.
Physical abuse involves violent and forceful acts against a resident that results in temporary or permanent harm.
Examples of physical abuse include improper use of restraints, shoving, kicking, pushing, punching, scratching, etc.
Some people do not consider the ramifications of non-physical abuse, but emotional abuse is a real problem.
Elders can develop severe psychological trauma from repeated insults, verbal attacks, threats, and bullying.
No one wants to imagine sexual abuse occurring in a nursing home. Unfortunately, it happens.
Sexual abuse is any non-consensual sexual contact from a staff member, another resident, contractor, or even a visitor.
Financial abuse occurs when someone manipulates a resident into turning over financial information or access to their financial accounts.
Financial abuse is typically more common with home healthcare workers who have access to financial documents, but it can also occur in a nursing home.
Some employees intentionally work to manipulate the victim into feeling like they have a close relationship.
After the false relationship is established, the employee tries to get the resident to hand over financial information or change their estate planning documents.
Financial abuse includes cashing a resident’s check, forging a check or loan documents, and more.
Georgia Nursing Home Neglect
Nursing home neglect may not sound as horrific as nursing home abuse, but neglect can still lead to traumatic injuries and even death.
One example of neglect is not regularly moving a resident, which causes them to develop bedsores. Two other serious types of nursing home neglect are failure to monitor and medication errors.
Failure to Monitor
Nursing home neglect can include the failure to monitor a resident who is at risk for falling. When a nursing home is understaffed, patients are also at risk of wandering off or getting lost.
Medication errors can be either neglect or abuse, depending on the circumstances. Medication errors can include:
- Administering the wrong dosage of medication;
- Not shaking liquid medicine before administering;
- Crushing or cutting pills that should be administered whole; and
- Not giving liquids or food with medication.
Our nursing home neglect lawyers at MG Law can help you determine whether your case involves nursing home neglect or abuse.
Signs of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
The best way to identify nursing home neglect and abuse is to pay close attention to your family member and their room conditions each time you visit. The more often you visit, the better.
Some potential warning signs include:
- Sudden weight loss,
- Unexplained injuries,
- Sudden mood changes,
- Unexplained bruises,
- Sudden financial changes,
- Unexplained infections,
- Sudden withdrawal,
- Restrictions on visits,
- Dirty room conditions, and
- Poor personal hygiene.
Consider keeping a journal detailing your visits. You can track any physical or emotional changes each time. You can also document the room condition.
If you see the trash hasn’t been emptied for days or food trays are left in the room for days at a time, you should be documenting that.
If something seems off, it probably is. If you suspect something is happening, speak with a lawyer for nursing home neglect in Georgia.
What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
The sooner you identify potential neglect or abuse, the better. If your family member’s life is in immediate danger, you should contact 911 right away.
Does your family member have a primary doctor not affiliated with the nursing home? If so, you can contact them to schedule a check-up that could help you identify potential issues.
Contacting a Georgia nursing home abuse lawyer right away is also helpful. The sooner you hire an attorney, the sooner we can start preserving evidence.
It’s beneficial to be involved as soon as you suspect something is amiss. We can investigate and help uncover what is going on before the nursing home tries to cover up any abuse or neglect.
What Makes Nursing Home Abuse Cases Complicated?
Unfortunately, pursuing legal action for nursing home abuse or neglect is often complicated. Many times, the abuse or neglect is not easy to identify.
In cases where the resident cannot communicate, they might not be able to tell you what happened. Some residents are afraid to say anything for fear of retaliation and the risk of suffering additional abuse.
In other cases, abuse victims with dementia may not even realize they are victims.
How a Georgia Nursing Home Abuse Law Firm Can Assist
Georgia law doesn’t require hiring a nursing home attorney, but we highly recommend you do so. Navigating the legal system can be complicated, especially when alleging nursing home abuse or neglect.
Some of the ways MG Law can assist you includes:
- Gathering evidence,
- Taking photographs,
- Talk to witnesses,
- Order any incident reports,
- Obtain the power of attorney documents,
- Obtain a professional records review,
- Interviewing former nursing home employees, and
- Filing a lawsuit.
When you hire a nursing home neglect lawyer in Georgia, you will have a legal advocate who can help uncover whether your family member is a victim of abuse or neglect.
Contact a Georgia Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorney Today
At MG Law, we understand the serious nature of nursing home abuse and neglect. No one wants their family member to suffer or be mistreated.
Our nursing home neglect attorneys are here to help you in any way we can.
We have years of experience assisting Georgia victims, and we take allegations of nursing home abuse and neglect very seriously. We will work tirelessly to help you hold the responsible parties accountable.
With so many unreported instances of neglect and abuse, it’s crucial to stand up for your loved one’s rights. But coming forward and pursuing a claim could keep another family from enduring the same heartache.
Contact our office today to schedule an initial consultation to learn more about how MG Law can help.