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GALLATIN NURSING HOME ABUSE

Trusting a nursing home to take care of your elderly relative can be a difficult decision to make. When decided, you want the nursing facility to provide the best care possible for your loved one. Sometimes, however, the staff at nursing homes take advantage of their patients, even going so far as physically and emotionally abusing them. This can lead to devastating injuries or even death. If your loved one has suffered a traumatic experience at the hands of nursing home staff, he or she may be eligible for compensation for the nursing home’s wrongful actions. It is critical to obtain representation as soon as possible.

While few look forward to the day when a loved one must relocate to a nursing home, it is a reality for many of us. We take solace in knowing that these facilities are highly regulated, with skilled and trained professionals providing care for those we love. Even with these safeguards in place however, elder abuse happens, and the statistics are downright frightening. In 2016, Nashville Public Television aired a special called “Aging Matters,” which opened with the sobering reminder that there are over 5 million victims of elder abuse in the United States.

If you suspect your loved one is one of these 5 million victims, the Gallatin nursing home lawyers at Hughes & Coleman Injury Lawyers can help you hold the responsible parties accountable and collect substantial compensation for the losses you and your loved one have incurred. To discuss your options during a free consultation, call our office today at 800-800-4600.

What Constitutes Nursing Home Abuse?

Nursing home residents make up some of our society’s most vulnerable members, many of them unable to perform essential everyday activities, such as eating, bathing, and dressing, on their own. They depend on others for the safe, comfortable daily existence that many of us take for granted.

Sadly, many elder abuse victims have compromised mental faculties and may be unable to report that they are being victimized. Some might not even be aware it is happening. As their loved one, you must be their eyes and ears, and remain alert when something seems amiss. In fact, Tennessee law requires you to tell someone if you suspect that an older adult is being abused.

Here are some common forms of nursing home abuse of which anyone with a loved one in an assisted living facility should be aware:

Physical Abuse

From time to time, it might be necessary for a caregiver to physically restrain an elderly resident, such as when a person with Alzheimer’s or dementia tries to escape the premises. But excessively rough handling, as evidenced by bruises, sore spots, or abrasions, is never okay, no matter the circumstances. If you notice suspicious marks or injuries on your loved one, you should speak up and find out the reason.

Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse of an older adult can take many forms, including insults, unreasonable demands, manipulation, humiliation, isolation, or lack of empathy.

Sexual Abuse

Sadly, nursing home residents sometimes become victims of sexual abuse and harassment, which can include physical contact, unwanted advances, or obscene and crude comments or jokes.

Financial Abuse

Financial abuse can occur in several ways. It can happen through outright stealing, or it can involve a caregiver manipulating a nursing home resident into giving them money, buying them gifts, authorizing them to use a credit card, or even changing the will to include the caregiver.

Nursing Home Neglect

Nursing home abuse does not always involve explicit action. Neglect, or a failure to meet basic needs, can also constitute abuse. Most nursing home residents have a long list of needs, and their caregivers have the responsibility of meeting these needs. A caregiver or facility that fails to meet any of these needs, such as feeding and bathing a resident or giving them their medicine at the proper times, may be guilty of nursing home neglect.

If you suspect your loved one has been a victim of any form of nursing home abuse or neglect, first report your suspicions to the proper authorities, then contact Hughes & Coleman to discuss your options for taking action against the responsible party or parties. To set up a free consultation, call 800-800-4600.

How Do I Know if My Loved One is a Victim of Nursing Home Abuse?

You must always be on the lookout for any signs that something is “off” with your loved one. Things to watch for include the following:

  • Physical injuries (e.g., bruises, skin marks, abrasions, cuts);
  • Personality changes (e.g., depression, withdrawal, moodiness);
  • Bedsores;
  • Genital trauma;
  • Poor hygiene (e.g., dirty clothes, unkempt appearance, soiled bedsheets);
  • Fear or apprehension directed toward a particular caregiver;
  • A caregiver who refuses to leave you alone with your loved one;
  • Missing money or unexplained credit card charges; or
  • Unexplained medication changes.

Even if you have no proof but feel things are not as they should be, it is better to speak up and be wrong than to stay silent while your loved one continues to suffer. If you do not know where to turn for help, contact Hughes & Coleman and let one of our Gallatin nursing home lawyers advise you of your options.

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What Should I Do if I Suspect My Loved One Is a Victim of Nursing Home Abuse?

Trust your instincts. If you have any suspicion that your loved one has been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, do not wait to take action. Act immediately, taking the following steps:

  • Call 911 right away if you think your loved one or another resident is in immediate danger;
  • Report your suspicions to the manager or owner of the facility. If you suspect this person is involved in the abuse or neglect, skip this step;
  • File a report with the local police;
  • Report your suspicions to Tennessee’s Adult Protective Services by calling 1-888-APS-TENN or filling out a form online;
  • Schedule a consultation with a Gallatin nursing home lawyer at Hughes & Coleman to discuss your legal options.

To Schedule a Free Case Evaluation Call Us At 800-800-4600 Today

If your loved one was subjected to nursing home abuse or neglect, the Hughes & Coleman team can help you hold the responsible party accountable and recover compensation for the losses you and your loved one have incurred. We invite you to come in for a free consultation at our Gallatin office, located near the intersection of Eastland and the Gallatin Pike.

To schedule an appointment, call us at 800-800-4600.

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