Elderly abuse occurs when a caregiver or another person in a relationship of trust or care for an older person either commits an intentional act, or fails to act, in a way that creates harm or the risk of harm to the elderly person.
Elderly abuse and neglect can encompass a variety of issues including physical abuse, negligent care, sexual abuse and financial exploitation. While sometimes the results of elderly abuse are obvious – as the case of visible bruises from physical mistreatment or even the wrongful death of the individual – often the signs of elderly abuse can be less obvious or even hidden.
You cannot assume that victims of elderly abuse or neglect will report what is happening to them. Often, they are too afraid or embarrassed to report incidents of abuse and, in other cases they may have cognitive or physical impairments that prevent them from telling anyone what is happening.
If you suspect that a family member has been the victim of elderly abuse or may have been unfairly taken advantage of by a caregiver, an elderly care facility, or a nursing home, The Villages nursing home abuse attorneys can assist you with taking the necessary legal action to prevent further abuse and compensate your loved one and you for damages resulting from the abuse.Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse
Approximately 1.5 million people are cared for in nursing home across the country. Too often, these facilities are understaffed and the result is that residents end up neglected or abused, resulting in injuries or even death. While some injuries can be related to the person’s medical condition or age, the fact remains that many cases of nursing home injuries occur because of neglect and/or abuse.
Nursing homes are businesses and oftentimes these for-profit facilities place business decisions ahead of the residents for whom they are supposed to be providing quality care. It is never acceptable for nursing home corporations to allow neglect or abuse to take place and The Villages nursing home neglect attorneys have the experience to fight these businesses at trial so that you and your loved ones recover a full and fair settlement.Nursing Home Neglect
Nursing home neglect is the failure to provide a person with the services and care needed to ensure that he or she will be free from harm or pain. Neglect often results when a caregiver or nursing home employee fails to react in a timely fashion to a situation that present a danger to the resident, with the result being that the resident is harmed or ends up in great distress.
Nursing home neglect can include:
- Failing to seek out and provide essential medical care
- Failing to ensure adequate hygiene
- Failing to provide essential hydration
- Failing to provide essential nutrition
- Failing to ensure the resident is properly clothed
- Failing to support the resident’s need for assistance with basic activities of daily living
- Failing to provide adequate shelter
Because the nursing home patient may not be able to report abuse and neglect, there are certain red flags for abuse that every family member, friend, and caregiver should watch for. Keep in mind that signs of abuse can be both physical and psychological.
Nursing home abuse and injuries could include one of more of the following:
- Malnutrition. Nursing home staff are required to ensure that residents receive the nutrients necessary to remain safe and healthy
- Dehydration. Proper hydration is needed to sustain health and support critical bodily functions. In the elderly population, failure to provide clean drinking water can be life threatening.
- Bed sores or pressure sores. Bed sores are avoidable with proper care, such as assistance with rotating in bed and assistance with other types of mobility. Evidence of bed sores can signal abandonment or abuse.
- Cuts, bruises and fractures. A nursing home resident may receive injuries from slip and fall accidents due to lack of adequate supervision and may even receive bruises or cuts from physical abuse by a caregiver or nursing home staff member.
- Burns and scarring. are signs of abuse. If properly cared for, a nursing home resident should not be put in a situation where evidence of burns and scars exist.
- Poor hygiene. If a nursing home resident shows signs that their basic hygiene needs are not being met, this is a sign of neglect, abuse or abandonment.
- Mental or verbal abuse. Mental and verbal abuse can be devastating to a nursing home resident. Not only is it intimidating, but this type of abuse can result in depression and other psychological disorders.
- Sexual abuse and/or sexually transmitted diseases. Elder sexual abuse can result in pelvic injury, genital injury and anal injury, as well as other physical signs of trauma and/or the patient contracting an STD. Psychological signs are panic attacks, agitation, signs of PTDS, social withdrawal, and suicide attempts.
- Improper administration of medication. The failure to properly administer medication, or the withholding of medication, can have devastating physical and psychological effects, and can even result in death.
- Wrongful death. Nursing home abuse and neglect cannot only cause pain and suffering to the resident, it can also result in the premature death of a loved one.
If you believe that someone you love has suffered from inadequate care at a nursing home in The Villages or in Lake, Marion or Sumter County, contact the The Villages nursing home abuse attorneys at Whittel & Melton online or call us at 352-369-5334 for a complimentary consultation.Financial Elder Abuse
Most cases of financial elder abuse involve some level of persuasion or coercion to gain access to the senior’s assets. It is not uncommon for the abuser to be someone the elderly person or family trusts such as a caretaker, family member, friend or even a well-known professional such as a stockbroker or financial advisor.
Financial elderly abuse commonly involves the following:
- Loss of Stocks
- Improper Investments
- Loss of Real Estate
- Investment Fraud
- Mortgage Loan Fraud
If someone you love has been the victim of financial elderly abuse in The Villages or in Lake, Marion or Sumter County, contact the elderly abuse attorneys at Whittel & Melton online or call us at 352-369-5334 so that we can work towards recovering any monetary loss.