It’s a sad fact that many of our parents need to find care in a comprehensive care facility – commonly called a nursing home.
There are 552 comprehensive care facilities in Indiana as of Oct. 1, 2018, according to the Indiana State Department of Health. While the care these facilities give is exemplary, it is still a good idea to know the signs of elder abuse and keep an eye out for them.
The signs of abuse
Nursing home patients are almost always dependent on their care givers and if they are being abused, they are often afraid or unable to complain.
Here are some signs of abuse:
- Multiple bruises of similar shape
- Being passive or withdrawn
- Any injury not immediately reported to the family
- Being physically isolated
- Weight loss or weight gain
- Poor dental or physical hygiene
- Torn or dirty clothes
- Pressure sores that don’t heal
- Begging for food
Your parents have rights
The Indiana Attorney General issued a reminder that nursing home residents are still citizens of the United States and still retain rights. The AG lists several of these rights:
- You have the right to a dignified existence and a safe, clean environment
- You have the right to exercise your rights as a citizen of the United States
- You have the right to choose a representative to exercise your rights on your behalf
- You have the right to manage your financial affairs
- You have the right to choose your attending physician, to be informed and participate in your treatment, to be informed in advance of changes to your treatment plan
- You have the right to be free from abuse, exploitation, corporal punishment or involuntary seclusion
- You have the right to share your room with your spouse if you live at the same facility
- You have the right to interact with the community and to receive visitors
- You have the right to send and receive mail, packages and email
- You have the right to voice your grievances to the facility or another agency
If you suspect a problem with your parents or any other patient in a nursing home, you should call 911. Tabor Law Firm can help you and your parents maintain the rights they have worked so long to enjoy.