How to Avoid Abuse in Nursing Homes

One of the most common factors that negatively impact decisions whether a person should go to a nursing home or not is the possibility of abuse. Nobody wants to experience that, especially in the later part of his life where he is particularly vulnerable to it because of two reasons – he will not be able to defend himself or report his situation to the authorities due to physical and mental limitations.

Also, according to the website of Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, those who have experienced abuse in nursing homes may pursue compensation. So, it is not just an ethical and moral issue, but also a legal one. But how can you avoid nursing home abuse anyway?

Checking the nursing home’s competence

Prevention is better than cure, and this also applies to nursing home abuse. Before you put your loved one inside a nursing home, you should check the nursing home’s overall competence. Incompetent nursing homes may incidentally or accidentally inflict abuse. You should give particular attention to the following factors:

  • Availability of facilities, because the lack of facilities can result into negligence, such as cases of dehydration, hygiene issues, and malnutrition
  • Cleanliness of facilities, because ill-maintained premises may have negative effects, especially to older individuals who have weaker immune systems
  • Ratio of nursing home staff and patients, because the lack of staff or the abundance of patients can lead to staff impatience and incompetence, leading to abuse and neglect

Looking for signs of abuse

But if you have already put your loved one in a nursing home, do not worry, because you can still look for the signs of abuse, to give you hints whether your loved one is being treated right or not. Abuse can come in many forms, such as physical, emotional, and even sexual. Below are some of the most common signs:

  • Sudden change of behavior, especially in the presence of a particular nursing home staff or fellow resident
  • Unexplained complications in the genital or anal area
  • Unexplained wounds, especially on body parts that are often restrained, like the wrists, ankles, and maybe even the neck and chest
  • Worsening of existing medical conditions

Creating a long-term care plan

Elder planning is important, because growing old is inevitable. According to the website of Peck Ritchey, LLC, a long-term care plan has a lot of benefits, especially if you get them while you are still quite capable. Below are some of the most important benefits:

  • Finding peace after knowing that you will be taken care of, when the time comes
  • Finding a nursing home that is adequate for your needs

In short, having a care plan even before you need it significantly helps in preventing nursing home abuse.

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