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Nursing Home Neglect

Improper care of the elderly at nursing homes is a far-too-common problem in the United States, and North Carolina is no exception to this unfortunate trend. The elderly, who are often defenseless, can easily fall victim to nursing home neglect. This may include negligent care of elderly residents, reckless cost-cutting measures by the facility, or even cruel treatment by workers. Often times those who reside in nursing homes are in a feeble and dependent condition, preventing them from personally addressing any abuse or neglect. For this reason, it is the responsibility of the family members and friends of these elderly nursing home residents to identify and report suspicious accidents, changes in behavior, and preventable accidents.

Rest assured that nursing home neglect can lead to legal action and sizable monetary compensation paid to victims and their families. If you or someone you care about has suffered an injury while in a Monroe Union County nursing home or assisted living facility, contact Arnold & Smith Law, PLLC. Our skilled personal injury attorneys will passionately fight on behalf of you or your loved one to vindicate your rights under North Carolina law.

Nursing Home Neglect: A Growing Problem

The baby boomer generation is a large one, and its members are aging. They are becoming dependent on care from others and many are being placed in nursing homes or assisted living facilities. Often times families are just unable to adequately meet the needs of their loved ones, including the time and resources necessary to properly provide sufficient care. For these reasons, families trust and depend on facilities that focus on taking care of the elderly. Unfortunately, many nursing homes and assisted living facilities have tried to cut costs due to the rising price of caring for the elderly. Sometimes these cost-cutting measures are made at the expense of the elderly residents. This may result in a loved one being neglected or mistreated by a facility staff member who was trained improperly. Or, this may mean that an elderly loved one is suffering because the facilities are subpar, the equipment is failing, or medication is being administered improperly.

Statistics show a rising trend in nursing home neglect cases in the United States. The National Center on Elder Abuse notes that just one in 14 cases of elder abuse is even reported. It is even worse in cases involving financial exploitation of the elderly, where only one in 25 is reported. According to these numbers, as much as 2 million elderly individuals in America are exploited, injured, or otherwise mistreated by someone on whom they depend for basic care.

That being said, there are some ways to prevent elderly neglect. This begins with taking an active role and participating in the lives of those who are in Monroe Union County nursing homes or assisted living facilities. A simple walk through of the facility in which your loved one resides, as well as spending time with other elderly residents, can help identify any problems that the nursing home may have. Should you come across inadequate conditions in the home, they should be reported immediately to management. Moreover, to ensure issues have been resolved properly a follow up – or several follow ups – should happen.

Common Signs of Neglect and Abuse

Unfortunately, there are many forms of nursing home neglect. For this reason, it is critical to recognize the warning signs of abuse as early as possible. Some common signs of abuse include:

  • Dehydration;
  • Choking;
  • Infections;
  • Malnutrition;
  • Sexual assault;
  • Burns;
  • Peritonitis;
  • Improper medication;
  • Injury from fall(s);
  • Pressure sores;
  • Strangulation or restraint injuries;
  • Serious bruising;
  • Feeding tube accidents;
  • Verbal abuse;
  • Financial exploitation; and
  • Unexplained injuries.

Many times victims of nursing home or assisted living facility neglect and abuse do not report the wrongful conduct. Sometimes the elderly victim is afraid to report the bad behavior or is unable to do so at all due to his or her medical condition. Consequently, family and friends of individuals residing in a Monroe Union County nursing home or assisted living facility must keep close contact with their elderly loved ones. Constant communication and interaction will help ensure residents are not falling victim to abuse in North Carolina.

Personal Injury Help for the Elderly

If you or your elderly loved on has fallen victim to nursing home or assisted living facility neglect, abuse, or other mistreatment by a caregiver, do not wait to contact Arnold & Smith, PLLC. These skilled Monroe Union County personal injury attorneys will fight for your rights under applicable North Carolina law. Contact us today for your initial case evaluation.