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What Are the Red Flags of Nursing Home Abuse?

5 Warning Signs of Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse

Across the United States, there is a growing need for quality long-term care. Over the course of the next decade, it is estimated that Pennsylvanians over the age of 60 will account for nearly 30% of the state’s population. Unfortunately, the nursing home and long-term care facilities have continued to struggle to keep up with demand leading to countless reports of neglect and abuse.

At The Beasley Firm, we know the critical role that quality nursing homes play in caring for the elderly. We also know that these facilities must be held accountable when they fail to provide a safe environment for their residents. If your loved one has been the victim of nursing home abuse, contact our office at for a free case consultation. 

Signs of Physical Abuse

If your loved one complains of frequent injuries, you need to take this seriously. Unexplained bruises, scrapes, or scratches should all be signs of concern. If you begin to notice that your loved one is sustaining injuries, speak to the staff. They should be able to tell you not only how these injuries are happening but what they are doing to prevent further harm.

Common signs of physical abuse in nursing homes:

  • Frequent, unexplained bruises, scrapes, welts, or scratches;
  • Signs of restraint around the wrist or ankles;
  • Bite marks (commonly from other residents);
  • Broken bones or fractures; and
  • Sprains, strains, or dislocations.

It is suspected that the vast majority of nursing home abuse cases go unreported. Many residents that are being physically abused are fearful of coming forward. They may worry about retaliation. If you have concerns, you need to act quickly. If the facility prevents you from seeing or speaking with your loved one, contact our office immediately.

Bedsores

Bedsores are a serious and potentially life-threatening condition. Left untreated, a bedsore or pressure ulcer may become infected. If a nursing home resident is left in the same position for a prolonged period, they have a greater chance of developing a bedsore. 

Failure to turn or reposition a resident resulting in a bedsore is an indication that the nursing home is not providing an adequate standard of care. If your loved one develops a bedsore while residing at a Pennsylvania nursing home, contact our medical malpractice lawyers to discuss your rights.

Unexplained Weight Loss

Signs of malnourishment, such as unexplained weight loss or dehydration, are a red flag. Failure to provide adequate nutrition and sufficient hydrations may result in severe health concerns.

Nursing home residents should always have access to clean water and healthy food options. Staff may need to remind residents to drink throughout the day to prevent dehydration. Any concerns over your loved one’s health should be addressed by staff immediately.

High Staff Turnover

According to the Pennsylvania Health Care Association (PHCA), the state ranks 4th in the nation for individuals 65 and older. Within the next decade, it is expected that the elder population (60 years and older) will account for 29% of the population. Of the 88,000 beds available in the state’s approximately 700 nursing homes, 91% are currently occupied.

The demand for quality nursing home care will only continue to grow. Unfortunately, many facilities have struggled to adequately train and retain staff to meet these numbers. High staff turnover may be a strong indicator that the facility is cutting corners or putting too much stress on its employees.

Lack of Cleanliness

Finally, a lack of cleanliness may be an indication that your loved one is not receiving the care they need and deserve. Soiled bedding, unkempt hair, signs that they are unbathed, or other poor hygiene should all be addressed. If your questions about the lack of cleanliness at the facility go unanswered, you should consult with an attorney immediately.

Contact Our Office to Discuss Your Rights

If you have observed any red flags at your loved one’s nursing home facility, contact our office for a free case evaluation. Our lawyers will help you understand your rights and help hold any liable parties accountable for their wrongdoing. 

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