North Carolina Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Attorneys Urge Families to Look for Signs During Holiday Season Visits


December 10, 2011
By Lee Law Offices, P.A. on December 10, 2011 9:30 AM |

Families build traditions and spend lots of quality time during the holiday season. If you have parents, grandparents or other loved ones at a nursing home, don't forget to include them in your holiday celebrations.

Greensboro nursing home neglect and abuse attorneys know that patients who don't receive visitors regularly are more prone to abuse or neglect in a nursing home. Family members must keep tabs on their elders living in these types of facilities to ensure they are not being mistreated by residents, staff or medical providers.
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In a two-part "Visiting Nursing Homes During the Holidays" series, we hope to open your eyes to some of the signs of abuse or neglect to look for as you visit loved ones. There is also some good information about how to choose the right nursing home for your loved ones when they can no longer take care of themselves.

Abuse and neglect in Charlotte nursing homes or elsewhere can range anywhere from not changing bed sheets regularly to nurses making an error in medication management.

WWAY reports of a recent example of nursing home neglect when a couple visited a parent at a nursing home in New Hanover County and discovered the facility was operating without water. The couple was about to leave and saw the staff carrying around five-gallon jugs of water, which raised suspicion after being told earlier by the loved one that all they had to eat for breakfast was cold cereal. When questioned, management confirmed the water had been shut off for more than a week forcing residents to live without running water. Routine tests on the water found signs of bacteria and forced the facility to rectify the problem by putting chemicals in the system. More than one test detected signs of bacteria, which resulted in the facility leaving the water turned off for days.

The Nursing Home Monitor keeps the public informed about news of abuse and neglect occurring in facilities throughout the country, including several recent incidents at Charlotte-area nursing homes. Several homes have received violations for medication errors, allowing residents to roam the streets at night, untreated wounds and abuse, among other citations.

As you visit an elder at a nursing home this holiday, stay attentive for signs of neglect or abuse. The following are some signs to look for from the Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Resource Center:

-Extended deprivation of food or water.
-Signs of assault or battery evidenced by bruising, lacerations or unattended wounds.
-Symptoms of over-medication or not being given the correct medication.
-Witness a resident being slapped, shaken or mistreated by a staff member or another resident.
-Failure to provide necessary care to prevent bed sores, malnutrition, or dehydration.
-Residents live in unsanitary conditions.

If it doesn't look right to you, then it probably isn't and it needs to be questioned and possibly reported. Help protect your loved ones from mistreatment by visiting often and asking frequent questions about how they like living at the facility.

If you notice signs of abuse or neglect at a North Carolina nursing home, contact the personal injury lawyers at Lee Law Offices P.A. to discuss your loved one's rights. Call 1-800-887-1965 for a free consultation with an experienced nursing home abuse attorney today.

Additional Resources:
Only on 3: Nursing home running without water, by Marcy Cuevas, WWAY News Channel 3.

More Blog Entries:
Patient Care Neglect at North Carolina Nursing Homes and Rehab Centers a Concern for Families in Statesville, Elsewhere, North Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, November 18, 2011.

Legislation Would Limit Compensation on North Carolina Malpractice Claims, Leaving Victims to Pay Out-Of-Pocket, North Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, August 18, 2011.