Family members are important for reporting abuse. It isn’t just noticing in their own loved ones, but also in other residents at the nursing home. Currently, many nursing homes do not allow visitors since the elderly are the most at risk of catching COVID-19. Therefore, there are no longer outside eyes that can report any elder abuse during the pandemic.
About Nursing Home Abuse
Each year in the United States, an estimated 2.1 million seniors are the victims of some form of abuse. Many elderly do not report the abuse or neglect. Unfortunately, abused elders die earlier than those who are well cared for. According to the Assisted Living Federation of America (ALFA), the maltreatment and abuse of the elderly is a significant problem among the elderly population in America. It is more common in women over age 80. Abuse victims are at a 300 perfect increase of dying within three years. Unfortunately, only 1 out of every 6 elderly persons report the event.
Elder Abuse in the Pandemic
It is important that even if one cannot see a loved one to ask questions about their care. The number one indicator that elder abuse during the pandemic is happening is presented bed sores. The skin breaks down since the patient does not move for hours or days. Also, if a loved one has hip or femur fractures unexplainably this could also be a dangerous sign. In addition, pay attention to any rapid weight loss. Rapid weight loss is a person losing more than 10% of their body mass. Sometimes facilities will try to conceal these injuries. Ask to Skype or FaceTime with a loved one. If the facility denies this form of communication, it could be a red flag. A phone call is not good enough, especially if the loved one is nonverbal. Therefore, make sure to have daily or weekly video calls with staff or the loved one. This includes asking to see the legs and other aspects of the skin and not just the face.
Get Justice for a Loved One
If you suspect abuse or neglect, do not accept denials. Instead, contact a knowledgeable lawyer experienced with representing victims. When an abuser injures a resident at a care facility, it is not always obvious what happened and legal liability. The evidence available is often incomplete and may be self-serving for the defendant – the nursing home. This is why a free consultation with us is so important. We have been assisting the injured for 20 years. We help clients from all over the country. Our consultations are completely free. Call today.