Nursing Home Abuse Overview
We expect nursing home staff to provide excellent care to our loved ones that we have entrusted
to watch over them. Nursing homes exist to provide a level of quality of care, which the family
of an elderly loved one is unable to provide. Fortunately, most nursing homes do provide
excellent care for the elder residents that live there. However, that is not always the case. You should never allow suspected elder abuse or nursing home abuse to continue confronted. The
following is a list of what you should do, if you suspect nursing home abuse.
Identifying Nursing Home Abuse
Caring for your elderly loved ones is a sign of love. However, in some cases, younger adults may
be unable to meet the special needs of their elderly loved ones and this often results in using a nursing home for the care of your loved one.
When selecting nursing homes for elderly loved ones, it is understandable that the younger adults research well into their choice of the nursing home before putting their loved ones in it. Sadly, the amount of research that has gone into the decision may have little to no effect on the chances of abuse.
If you recognize any of the signs of abuse, discussed in an earlier post, or neglect, there are steps that you can take to protect the health, rights, and interest of your elderly loved one who is a suspected victim of nursing home abuse.
When such signs of neglect and/or abuse are noticed, it is important for you to act fast as this
could further worsen the condition of your loved one. However, before taking any rash steps, it is important for you to first weigh your options and the potential effect of the decision you are about to make.
If you make a scene and report to the nursing home administration, you may be met with a dead
end as the evidence to prove negligence may be covered up. To prevent this, take the steps
7 Steps to Take if you Suspect Nursing Home Abuse
1. Call the authorities
A great way to start your move against the abuse that has been meted out on your loved one is to
call 911, especially if the victim’s life is in immediate danger. If not, you can proceed to speak to an Oklahoma nursing home abuse and neglect lawyer who is in a better position to take up the case and direct it to the appropriate authorities.
Reporting suspected elder abuse or neglect is an essential step to prevent further abuse on other elderly residents of the nursing home. By making a formal report, the nursing home is brought to book and this saves more residents from such ill-treatment. If you do not know how to contact in Oklahoma, you may contact the Department of Health and Human Services and the National Center on Elder Abuse at (800) 677-1116. Additionally, the nursing home is required to have contact information posted about the right party to contact regarding misconduct.
2. Relocate your loved one
Whether your loved one faces an immediate threat to their life or not, it is recommended that you take them out of the abusive facility and put them in an environment where they are showered
with love and well cared for.
However, relocation may not be necessary if investigations revealed the act to have been
perpetrated by a single employee who has since been laid off.
3. Document Treatment
Building a strong claim relies heavily on the presence of evidence. To gather the needed
evidence, you need to be detailed and meticulous with the information that you come across
during this period. Make sure to document the diagnostic images, photographs of bedsores,
lacerations, and/or bruises; nursing logs, as well as hospital records that support your claim of nursing home abuse.
4. Ask Questions of the Nursing Home Staff and Management
It is important that you ask questions of the nursing home staff and management regarding the
suspected abuse. You should be willing to listen to their explanation or analysis of the situation.
It may be useful testimony in your nursing home abuse claim or lawsuit later on, if nothing else. You will need to immediately look into further action, if nursing home staff is unwilling or unable to answer your questions.
Nursing home management should be willing to meet with you and explain their protocols and
what was or was not done to ensure your loved one was properly cared for in the nursing home.
Nursing home management should be able to address concerns of nursing home abuse and
nursing home neglect, which will inform your analysis when meeting with nursing home abuse
5. Speak to your loved on in the Nursing Home
You should speak to your loved one that was the victim of nursing home abuse or nursing home
neglect as soon as it is safe to do so and you should speak to him or her in private. In some
extreme cases, nursing home staff will not allow you to have a private conversation, which
should be a red flag of negligence or misconduct and you should contact a nursing home abuse
attorney and law enforcement.
Your elder loved one that suffered the abuse or nursing home neglect may be able to provide you
details of what took place and the nursing home staff and management that they interacted with
during the abuse or neglect.
6. Be Respectful and Take Notes
Nursing home staff that is invested in patient care will likely speak with you and give you
valuable information into what took place related to your loved one’s care. Take written notes of any information you can gather and photographs of your elderly loved one’s room and anything
in the center that is concerning. If you are able to do so, consider speaking to other residents that are willing to speak to you and are coherent. These may turn out to be invaluable witnesses and will assist you in building your case against the nursing home center for abuse or neglect.
7. Speak to a nursing home abuse lawyer
If you haven’t already reached out to an Oklahoma nursing home abuse lawyer, now is the best
time to do so. When choosing a nursing home abuse lawyer, be sure to pick out an attorney with
years of experience, great reviews from past clients, and a track record of successfully handled
cases. Your loved one is entitled to feel safe and may be entitled to compensation, if someone
maliciously or negligently allowed them to suffer. Additionally, you may be entitled to
compensation due to your relation to your loved one as well.
Conclusion on Nursing Home Abuse
Reporting elder abuse and nursing home negligence is essential to stop abusive or negligent
facilities from continuing to fail to provide a safe environment for the most vulnerable
population. Taking a stand and seeking legal counsel may be the only way to change the conduct
of an abusive facility by impacting their profit margin.
The surest way to stop elder abuse and nursing home neglect is to take action and do so now.
Reports of abuse to management, law enforcement, and authorities is the only way to prevent
future harm. Consulting and retaining an experienced nursing home abuse attorney will assist
your family is correcting the wrong that your elder loved one has suffered and receiving
compensation for the harm caused to your loved one.
Contact Cannon & Associates: Oklahoma Fierce Advocates For Nursing Home Abuse Cases
Nursing home abuse is a breach of contract and you need to have the best attorney in your corner
to get your family the compensation you deserve. At Cannon & Associates, we have a team of attorneys who boast years of experience and dedication to your cause.
Founder John Cannon has been recognized as a Super Lawyer and National Trial Lawyer Top 40 under 40 and S. Douglas Elliott is the former director of the largest group of state nursing homes
in Oklahoma. Contact Cannon & Associates by completing the CONTACT FORM ON THIS PAGE NOW or CALL at 405-657-2323 for a free confidential case evaluation.