A Growing Problem

Nursing home abuse is a growing problem, as many elderly residents fail to report these incidents because they are ashamed or feel intimated. Nursing home injury cases caused by nursing home negligence is a growing problem in the United States. Federal government studies reveal that at least 30 percent of the nursing homes across the country have committed some form of negligence or malice that has resulted in personal injury to elderly patients.

Common Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

Signs of nursing home abuse include:

  • Unexplained bruises, cuts, burns, sprains, or fractures in different stages of healing
  • Abrupt behavioral changes
  • Staff who do not allow you to be alone with your loved one
  • Bedsores
  • Mysterious venereal disease or genital infections
  • Residents who are kept constantly over-medicated
  • Vaginal or anal bleeding and stained or bloody undergarments
  • Staff who refuses to allow visitors or delays visitation

    Residents typically do not report neglect. Some are afraid or unable. Some simply do not recognize it themselves.Proper care in a nursing home may seem to some like excessive pampering, but it is not. Residents must have water available at all times, even if that means a staff member has to come to the room frequently to hold the glass. Residents must be supervised at all times to prevent nursing home accidents and injuries. And so much more.

     When you visit the staff may seem very attentive and helpful, but they may simply be on their best behavior because you are there observing. Be on the lookout for signs of neglect such as weight loss, bedsores, poor hygiene, dehydration, sunburn, injuries, infections, and unsanitary conditions

If you believe a loved one could be suffering from abuse or neglect, you do have options available to you. First off, The Illinois Department of Public Health is in charge of enforcing the Nursing Home Care Act throughout the state of Illinois, and all facilities that fall under the definition of a long term care facility are required to comply with the Act.  First off you can file a complaint with the long-term care ombudsman, who is legally required to investigate your complaint and ensure that the facility complies with the acts required.  If a long-term care facility violates the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act and fails to comply can result in a more in-depth investigation, fines, and other penalties for any violations found.

To learn more about the options you have when you suspect that your family member could be the victim of nursing home abuse and neglect, we recommend consulting one of our experienced attorneys.