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Picking up on signs of nursing home neglect


Posted on behalf of Michael D'Amico of D'Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC on Jul 25, 2014 in Nursing Home Neglect

Nursing home neglect is widely known as a pervasive problem. The unfortunate reality is that a nursing home resident's loved ones cannot be around at all times, so it may be difficult to identify improper care as soon as it begins.

On a basic level, neglect is characterized by failing to provide proper care to nursing home residents, which is slightly different than committing intentional acts of abuse. Despite the difference, neglect can still be devastating.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services outlines basic signs of neglect in long-term care facilities. While spending time with a nursing home resident, it may be beneficial to look for the following indicators, as they are typically associated with neglect:

  • Evidence of poor diet and hydration.
  • Untreated health problems, including bed sores.
  • Residents are housed in unlivable conditions, including lack of climate control, electricity and running water.
  • Exposure to pests, such as insects and rodents.
  • Unclean conditions.

In some cases, nursing home residents might verbally indicate that they're being neglected, but that is not a guarantee. No one deserves to be deprived of care in this way, so loved ones may have to step in and be an advocate if signs of neglect are present.

At the same time, it may be beneficial to let provide your loved ones with information about neglect and what they can do if it becomes an issue. Namely, they should know that they can speak up or even notify the Connecticut ombudsman for long-term care.

Either way, action will be needed to put an end to inaction on the part of long-term care providers.

Source: U.S. Office on Women's Health, "Healthy Aging," accessed July 10, 2014