When we entrust the care of our elderly family members and friends to a professional care facility, we expect that they will be treated in a kind, loving way. But as much as it pains us to admit this, abuse of the elderly is a real problem in this country and even care facilities can be the source of abuse from time to time.
Now that the holidays are upon us and loved ones are constantly on our minds, this is the perfect time to complete a thorough check-in of anyone who is being professionally cared for, even in a facility that has an exceptional reputation. Here are some quick ideas on how to ensure that your loved one is being taken care of properly:
Check for Signs of Physical Abuse
The most obvious signs of elderly abuse are also likely to be the most disturbing. If you notice bruises or even worse physical ailments, then you should consider the possibility of abuse. Of course, there are reasons why an injury could have been sustained, but if the staff says something out of the ordinary such as he or she bumped into a wall, then you may want to question it further. Also keep in mind that if the injury is severe, the care facility will have an injury report on file and additional treatment outside of the care facility may be necessary.
Ensure That the Elderly’s Itinerary Is Being Followed
Each elderly person has a certain kind of itinerary that must be followed. Much of the time, this boils down to medical treatments or medications, but it can also include anything that is needed for that person’s well-being, including for their mental or emotional health. When you go to check in on your loved one over the holiday, make sure that his or her itinerary is being followed closely.
Ask the Person If He or She Has Any Concerns
Very often, the best way to discover that a loved one is being abused at a care facility is to simply ask them how they’re being treated. He or she may be afraid to rat out people at the facility, but you need to explain to them that it’s important that you’re told everything and that they don’t have anything to fear. This may be a little more difficult if the person suffers from dementia or a similar disorder, but it’s important not to discount anything that they tell you even if their mental state has been compromised.
Reach Out to Others with Loved Ones at the Facility
If you have suspicions or concerns that your loved one is not being taken care of and he or she is not forthcoming or is unable to discuss the issue, then reaching out to other people who have loved ones at the same facility may be a good way to learn more about the care being provided. They can give you a good idea of how their family members and friends are being treated. While their case may be different than yours, it may be a good indicator as to whether or not abuse is occurring.
Elder abuse is never something that should not be taken lightly. If a loved one is being abused, contact the authorities or regulatory agency to make a complaint, then give the attorneys at Mintz Law Firm a call right away. We will provide a free case consultation and discuss how your loved one may obtain proper compensation for their injuries.