A person wearing a brown sweater assists an elderly individual in a beige sweater who is holding a small yellow and blue ball. Another person in a green sweater is seated nearby. The setting appears to be a supportive or caregiving environment, highlighting the importance of vigilance to report incidents of neglect.

When you decide it is time a loved one goes to a nursing home, you trust they will treat him or her with respect and dignity. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. If you find yourself in this situation, here are some of the questions you may have:

How do I know if my loved one is being neglected in a nursing home?

Oftentimes, patients in nursing homes are too frightened to report an incident of abuse or neglect. Since they live with and see their caretakers every day, they may feel threatened to report them. This is why it is your job to take note of some warning signs of abuse or neglect. Some warning signs are as follows:

  • Unexplained, accidents, falls and injuries
  • Frequent bruising
  • A sudden change in the resident’s attitude: fearful, withdrawn, or uncommunicative.
  • Soiled bed linens or poor personal hygiene
  • The disappearance of personal possessions or cash
  • Bedsores or pressure ulcers
  • Broken bones
  • Improper medication dosing
  • Verbal abuse or harassment
  • Infections
  • Reports of physical or sexual abuse
  • Injuries from nursing home falls
  • Dehydration
  • Malnutrition
  • Sudden weight loss

How do I report nursing home abuse?

In Pennsylvania, you may contact the Department of Health, the Department of Health and Human Services Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, and the Department of Health’s Division of Nursing Home Care Facilities to report any incidents of neglect or abuse. You should also ensure you speak with nursing home management and contact the police. You may file a complaint via the Nursing Home Complaint Form, or by calling the Nursing Home Complaint Hotline at 1-888-201-4563. To ensure your complaint is processed in a timely manner, however, there are several things you must do. You must type or print very clearly, attach copies–no originals–of paper materials that support your concern, and be sure to include any names and phone numbers with whom you have already filed a complaint with. All forms must be completed in their entirety.

How can I prove a nursing home abused or neglected my loved one?

The first thing you should do when suspecting an incident of abuse is to contact the police. They will investigate your claim and document any evidence of abuse or neglect. You may use this documentation as proof. You should also hire an attorney who can help you recover any security camera footage of the accident, or even take pictures of the hazardous safety or living conditions. Lastly, though perhaps most importantly, you should get your loved one to a physician who can help him or her recover from their injuries. Their physician will provide medical documentation that you can also use to prove your claim.

Contact our experienced Pennsylvania firm

There is nothing worse than sustaining injuries at the hands of another person, especially due to sheer carelessness. Not only must you now recover physically, but you must also find a way to pay for your recovery as well. This is why if you or someone you know has sustained injuries due to another party’s negligence, you must contact the Law Offices of Ilkhanoff & Silverstein today. An attorney who is willing to fight for your right to a smooth recovery can make all the difference.