When placing a loved one in a nursing home, you hope they will receive the love you would show them yourself. All nursing homes are not created equal, though, and some can be negligent. We reached out to our readers to find out the most common forms of nursing home negligence. Keep reading to see what they had to report.
Patient and Facility Negligence
The most common form of nursing home negligence is patient neglect. Often, despite orders, patients in nursing homes are not supervised well enough to ensure they are getting the medication, nutrition, exercise, and socialization they require.
Another form of neglect is in being aware of issues with the property or facility itself and not taking steps to correct them. This includes allowing patient rooms to get too warm due to faulty air conditioning that is not addressed or allowing mold growth in patient rooms from roof leaks that are not fixed promptly. Another common negligence is keeping residents in an unsafe environment because of known security issues that have not been addressed.
Nursing homes have a responsibility to patients and their families to provide a safe, nurturing environment that prioritizes patient care, but too often, nursing homes cut corners, delay repairs, and put their patients at risk.
Not Helping Patients Reach the Bathroom
Ignoring repeated patient requests to use the bathroom because aides and nurses are too busy is a common form of nursing home negligence. In many cases, continent patients are put into diapers. These diapers are then doubled or tripled with the inner diapers getting removed when soiled out of convenience. [It is] not acceptable by state standards, yet it happens in every facility despite what management says. It’s so sad because the patients are completely capable of going to the toilet if someone would just help them walk there. Instead, they are humiliated by defecating in a diaper like an infant.
Six Forms of Nursing Home Negligence
The most common forms of nursing home negligence inlcude:
1. Skin breakdown for people who are bedridden and are not turned or moved regularly
4. Poor personal hygiene because the staff is not available or able to bathe or clean residents regularly
5. Little or no response when residents ask for staff to come in to assist them with something
6. Social isolation – The staff is not available to help residents leave their room for meals or group activities and the family does not visit residents to provide social interaction.
Physical, Emotional, and Financial Negligence
Negligence is known to be the most common type of abuse experienced by nursing home residents, and it can lead to very serious consequences. The majority of residents in nursing homes have either experienced neglect first-hand or have witnessed others being subjected to it. Neglect is categorized as the only kind of nursing home abuse that can be done unintentionally, for example when the staff is unable, for one reason or another, to provide adequate emotional, social, physical, or even medical care to a resident.
The most common forms of nursing home negligence, however, are those that are performed intentionally. These can include physical negligence that can cause injury to a resident either by punching, slapping, kicking, biting, and even in some cases the unwarranted restraint of a resident. These sorts of instances are discouragingly common because most individuals in nursing homes are elderly or might have other impairments that do not allow them to defend themselves or fight back.
Another common form of nursing home negligence is financial negligence because most nursing home residents are seniors and this makes them easy targets for exploitation. Unscrupulous individuals might take advantage of nursing home residents by stealing their money or valuables, unauthorized use of credit cards or even charging them for unnecessary or non-existent services.
The final most common form of nursing home abuse is emotional negligence which can consist of verbal and non-verbal acts such as harassment, intimidation, bullying, or isolation, among others. This form of negligence might be harder to identify as it manifests itself in the development of emotional or psychological symptoms such as depression, anxiety, or PTSD.
Limited Social Interactions Between Attendees and Patients
I noticed that most nursing homes just take care of the elderly there but do not have a good and healthy social interaction with them. I rarely see nurses and nurse technicians conversing with the elderly for more than 15 minutes. They just ask how they are doing and move on to the next.
Attendees have to realize that a good social environment is also essential in the health of the people inside the nursing home. Talking to each other and having meaningful conversations will do the trick. I also suggest having weekly programs where the elderly can enjoy doing activities that they love.
This is a crowdsourced article. Contributors' statements do not necessarily reflect the opinion of this website, other people, businesses, or other contributors.