Early Signs of Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse
Nursing homes and retirement communities should be spaces wherein your loved ones can rest easy knowing they are in a safe and secure place and have easy access to medical care. Unfortunately, horrible acts can occur in these very spaces. Even right here in Texas, abuse can strike. It is important to recognize it when it does strike and know when you might need a lawyer. Just by the sheer number of different nursing homes throughout places like New Braunfels, Seguin, Kyle, Beeville, and more, it is possible that a loved one may be experiencing negligence.
Even a small community like Beeville, there are at least two different elder care facilities. Other communities can have significantly more. Given the prevalence of these facilities, it is important to be knowledgeable about the signs of abuse. You may see and recognize the signs, but not know what to do about it. The law can be complicated – this is why attorneys exist – and it is important to be recognize the early signs of nursing home neglect or abuse.
Such a guide cannot replace the effectiveness of the legal expertise that Carabin & Shaw has. It is always advisable to contact a lawyer. That said, there are a number of key points that are important to watch out for.
Beeville’s elder-care facilities are subject to a number of laws that seek to ensure a high standard of care. Failure to keep to these rules likely indicates Beeville nursing home negligence or abuse. Spaces that are free of abuse are an entitlement that you and your loved ones should have access to, via regulations set by the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Service (DADS).
It is the Texas Administrative Code that dictates the level of quality care elder facility residents in places like Beeville should receive. There are key services that this code requires facilities to maintain, as to provide the “highest possible mental, physical and psychosocial wellbeing” of patients at elder care facilities. These facilities must provide amenities such as personal items, over-the-counter medications, adequate room and board, medical supplies, and social services. Failure to provide access to a comprehensive care plan that provides such amenities can be a red flag and one of the early signs of nursing home neglect or abuse.
Dietary needs are a fundamental need that elder care facility residents should have access to. Staff are required to meet the dietary needs of a patient in a nutritious and balanced manner. This diet should also be administered in as dignified a manner as medically possible. The use of nasogastric tubes on patients should only be permissible in the event of medical necessity. Even then, it is essential that staff provide close care and monitoring so as to avoid ulcers, dehydration, and other medical conditions.
A sanitary and safe environment is required in elder care facilities, with there being strict guidelines indicating just how clean and well-maintained these spaces should be. Even just not having access to clean linens and towels is one of the early signs of nursing home neglect or abuse.
Another sign that it may be time to talk to an attorney is if a patient is not getting checked regularly for bedsores. Though sometimes not medically feasible, steps should be taken when possible to avoid the development of bedsores. Aiding a resident’s mobility is just one way in which elder care facilities should work to prevent bedsores, whenever possible.
Given the common association of nursing homes with on-site medical care, your loved ones should be able to access medicine deemed necessary for your plan of care. A lawyer should be contacted if there is a clear failure to deliver medicine to a patient. Staff should likewise should take steps to prevent errors with medicine dosage. Unneeded or excessive medication should also be avoided.
Another common issue that faces elder care residents is with staffing these facilities. DADS dictates that staff must be well-trained and prepared for their duties at such facilities. There are clear rules on how many patients a direct caregiver can have under their care during specific times of day – one for every five during the day, one for every ten during the evening, and one for every fifteen during the night. Further, an RN must be available eight hours a day, seven days a week.
There are multiple other issues that you or a loved one might encounter with elder care facilities, such as nursing homes. If you or a loved one feel that a facility is failing to meet reasonable expectations of care, you should contact a lawyer right away. Call a Beeville nursing home abuse lawyer from Carabin & Shaw today at 361.358.6300.