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Steps for handling suspected neglect in a nursing home

If you find yourself wondering why your loved one is failing after spending some time in a new nursing home, you may have cause for concern. Neglect in nursing homes is on the rise as staffing shortages continue in the wake of a challenging year.

Confirming your suspicions may require you to become more of a presence and ask questions. Learn some things you can do to protect a vulnerable loved one from nursing home abuse.

Ask questions

When something feels off, you have the right to ask questions. Talk to the providers that tend to the patient, and if you do get proper responses, move up the chain of supervisors. If you have specific issues that make you suspect something is not right, take pictures. Bruises, swelling and bedsores may indicate neglect or abuse. Should things not add up, you may want to get another doctor’s opinion on repeated illnesses and injuries.

Remain observant

Stay active in the care of your loved one. Become proactive in the care and treatment plan. When you do not agree with the course of action the facility takes, seek advice elsewhere. Take notice of how the staff treats patients. If you hear or see signs of abuse or a failure to adhere to safety protocols, you may assume that it happens to your loved one as well. A fit facility should treat all patients well, whether a family member is present or not.

Making sure your loved one is safe and well cared for is of utmost concern. If you find yourself unsure of things, do what you believe is suitable for your loved one.