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Can you recognize signs of nursing home abuse?

When it came time to admit Mom, Dad or another loved one to a nursing home, you likely felt some apprehension about whether he or she would receive the best care. Many individuals understand these concerns, and though nursing home residences often do receive necessary attention, a chance exists that your loved one or other individuals could become the victims of nursing home abuse.

The various types of abuse that could occur in nursing homes include:

  • Physical abuse - This type of abuse may spring to mind when the notion of nursing home abuse comes up. Physical abuse could include any act that causes physical harm to a patient, such as hitting, overuse of restraints or lack of proper care.
  • Psychological abuse - Patients can suffer psychological abuse if they are subjected to yelling, humiliation or other forms of shame-inducing actions. Though the signs of this type of abuse may not present themselves as obviously as physical abuse, individuals may still recognize psychological issues if a loved one changes behaviorally.
  • Sexual abuse - No one wants to think of their loved one suffering sexual abuse, especially in a nursing home. Unfortunately, some staff, other patients or even relatives of other patients may take advantage of residents. Without proper consent, such acts are deplorable, and some patients may lack the cognitive ability to voice their distress at such a situation.
  • Financial exploitation - You may not have considered this type of abuse, but your loved one could potentially be taken advantage of financially while in a nursing home. Staff or other individuals who may have access to financial or other personal information for a patient could potentially take out credit cards in patient's name, directly steal from a patient or take money from bank accounts.

If you have noticed that your loved one has suffered broken bones, bruising, other changes in physical appearance, or emotional or behavioral changes, you may wish to determine if there is a chance any type of abuse may have occurred or continues to occur. If you feel that your loved one has been the victim of abusive treatment while in a nursing home, you may wish to find out your options for addressing the situation.

Legal steps exist that you could potentially utilize in order to seek justice for your family member and to ensure that such abuse stops. Speaking with experienced Missouri attorneys could help you better understand what legal paths may be open to you in order to address such a distressing turn of events.

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