When you have entrusted your loved one’s health and safety to a team of licensed care providers, you have the right to expect that they will offer quality care, in accordance with New York laws, as well as federal laws, and accepted safety standards of the industry. You cannot be with your parent 24/7, and, therefore, you must rely on staff members to take care of his or her needs. Sadly, nursing home negligence is problematic in this state and throughout the country.
Even if you visit your elderly parent regularly, you might not always be able to notice when something is wrong. However, there are certain issues or signs that should raise immediate concern because they are often symptoms of negligence or abuse. If your loved one exhibits such symptoms, it merits further investigation.
Bedsores are a common sign of nursing home negligence
If your loved one is partially or fully immobile, care providers know that he or she must change positions in the bed every few hours to prevent bedsores. Such sores are caused by friction, such as bed linens touching skin or the mattress against the lower back or heels of the feet. Care providers are specially trained and have devices, such as mats that go under a patient’s body, to help lift and move someone without causing harm.
If your parent suffers from bedsores, he or she needs medical attention. The sores can fester and easily become infected, which, in turn, can become a life-threatening situation.
Additional symptoms that are red flag signals for nursing home negligence
The following list shows seven additional symptoms that suggest that your loved one may be a victim of substandard nursing home care:
- Bruising, swelling or inflammation anywhere on the body
- Unexplained weight loss or lack of appetite
- Dehydration or malnutrition
- Apparent agitation or fear when a particular staff member is nearby
- Disheveled appearance or bad odor
- Soiled bed linens or clothing
If you notice any of these issues or your loved one mentions something to you, it is best to request a meeting with nursing home administrators right away. You should be satisfied with the explanations they provide. If you’re not, then do not hesitate to reach out for additional support to further investigate the situation.
Your loved one’s life might depend on it
Many patients in New York and across the country have suffered severe injuries, as well as fatalities, because of nursing home negligence. There is no excuse for substandard nursing care. State law allows victims of nursing negligence to seek restitution through the civil justice system.