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What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect in Florida

Due to the frailties associated with the elderly and disabled, such individuals are more likely to be victims of abuse and neglect than younger adults. It is important that everyone keep an eye out for signs that a vulnerable loved one is being abused or neglected. These abuses can be especially pronounced in nursing homes. Elderly people and people with disabilities go into a nursing home to receive care, but sometimes instead of care they are subject to abuse or neglect. This post provides an overview of nursing home abuse and neglect including possible signs that someone is being abused in a nursing home and what to do if you suspect nursing home abuse or neglect.

Signs of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

Nursing homes are monitored by the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration. The Agency has a list of nursing homes that are in trouble for failing inspections or have filed for bankruptcy protection. If you have a loved one in a nursing home or are choosing a nursing home please make sure you review the Agency’s website and inspection reports on file for the facility.

Signs of nursing home abuse and neglect can include:

  • Unexplained injuries or signs of previous injury like bruises or scars.
  • Changes in personality or behavior.
  • Broken glasses or other damaged assistive devices.
  • Unclean or unsanitary conditions.
  • Refusal for loved ones to see the elderly or disabled person alone.
  • Indications of being restrained such as rope marks on wrists.
  • Controlling or threatening behavior by staff.
  • Being left dirty or not being bathed regularly.
  • Unusual weight loss.
  • Malnutrition or dehydration.
  • Missing items or cash.
  • Bed sores, broken bones, infections or other untreated physical problems.
  • Sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Injuries to the genitals.
  • Overdosing on medication or signs that medication is not being taken regularly.
  • Suspicious charges on bills or double billing for the same care.

What to Do if You Suspect Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

If you suspect that a nursing home resident has been the victim of abuse or neglect, you can report it to the Florida Department of Elder Affairs on its website’s hotline number. Please remember that you do not need to be certain that abuse or neglect has occurred, as Adult Protective Services and possibly even the police will investigate any allegations of nursing home abuse and neglect that  appear to be credible.

Clearwater Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Attorneys

If you suspect that a loved one has been injured or has died as a result of abuse or neglect while in a nursing home, it is recommended that you seek legal advice from a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.  Call the experienced Clearwater personal injury attorneys at Roman & Roman, P.A.   

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