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Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Tad Thomas with Thomas Law Offices.
While the hope for nursing homes is that they will provide a warm, attentive home-like environment for aging loved ones, this is unfortunately not always the case. Additionally, without being constantly present, it can be difficult to identify signs of abuse or neglect within a care facility, especially emotional abuse. There are many kinds of abuse ranging from physical, to psychological, to financial and more. Emotional abuse is an often overlooked category of abuse but can have severe effects on not only the quality of life of an abuse victim but even the health and wellbeing of that person.
Unfortunately, many of the residents in these homes do not come forward to report the abuse on their own due to many factors such as intimidation, fear, and a lack of ability to communicate. One of the key indicators that emotional abuse is occurring within your loved one’s nursing home is an unexpected or seemingly unexplainable change in behavior or mood with your loved one.
This might mean ensuring they have their own cell phone in addition to teaching them how to use it so they can call you if something is wrong. This also allows them to record or film instances of emotional abuse if they are able to. It’s also important to check in on your loved one inside the nursing home on a daily basis and build a relationship with the staff responsible for caring for your loved one. This ensures a line of open communication, and the knowledge that you are actively aware of and involved in your loved one’s life could encourage nursing home staff to remain attentive and kind to your loved one.
If your loved one is showing signs of abuse or neglect regardless of the kind, take action. The following are some tips for reporting nursing home abuse:
Nursing home abuse experts unfortunately expect the instances of nursing home abuse to rise during the COVID-19 pandemic, with family members more isolated from each other than usual and nursing home staff under extreme stress and threat of burnout. If you suspect your loved one has suffered emotional abuse in a nursing home, seek legal counsel to learn what kind of action can be taken and what compensation your loved one might be eligible for.
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