If you help a loved one transition to life in a California nursing home, there are important issues to resolve, such as what will happen to his or her house, how will you pay nursing home expenses and which facility is a best fit for his or her needs. Knowing that your elderly parent will have professional care brings relief but, also, worry.
Number of cases in the United States is high
Sadly, government statistics show that more than 5 million elderly people suffer abuse at the hands of their caregivers each year, including one out of every 10 people age 60 and beyond who live in the United States. When you were touring nursing homes, you may have heard another patient or family member of a patient talk about witnessing abuse.
While living in a nursing home, your loved one may be at risk for physical, emotional or financial abuse. Many facilities are short-staffed, which is no excuse for mistreating patients; however, data shows that not having an adequate number of workers on hand to care for patients often leads to substandard care.
Does your loved one have special needs?
If your loved one suffers from dementia or some other cognitive impairment that impedes his or her ability to communicate, a lack of supervision or proper care could place him or her at great risk for illness or injury. Approximately 50% of dementia patients experience some form of neglect or abuse.
This startling statistic is undoubtedly enough to cause you concern when you can’t be with your loved one around the clock. If you notice signs of neglect or abuse in your loved one, it is always best to immediately file a report with a detailed explanation of what you have witnessed.
You can also enlist the support of local law enforcement agencies as needed if you believe you have evidence that proves that your family member has suffered illness or injury because of nursing home abuse or neglect.
Common symptoms of nursing home abuse
Perhaps you’re unsure of what to look for when it comes to monitoring your loved one’s condition to make sure that he or she is receiving quality care in a California nursing home. Issues that should cause concern include clothing that is inappropriate for weather conditions, left alone outside or in a hallway, irritation or fear when a particular care-worker is nearby, as well as unexplained bruises or other bodily injuries.
If your loved one is coherent and mentally stable, you can discuss the issue with him or her. If you request a meeting with nursing home officials and are not satisfied with the explanations they give you, you can further investigate the situation as you see best.