It’s heartbreaking for people to have their loved ones get enrolled in a nursing home. According to the National Institute on Aging, over 1.4 million elderly Americans live in nursing homes, which is expected to grow significantly over the next decade. Nursing home care costs are also rapidly increasing; the average annual price for a private room is now over $87,000.
There are many reasons why people might have to resort to nursing home care. Some elderly individuals require around-the-clock care due to advanced age or severe health conditions. Others may need short-term rehabilitation after a hospital stay. But for many people, nursing home care is a last resort when all other options have been exhausted.
The decision to enroll a loved one in a nursing home is never easy, and it can be heartbreaking for all involved. Families often feel guilty and anxious about leaving their loved one in someone else’s care. The truth is that most nursing homes provide high-quality care. The vast majority of nurses are caring and compassionate professionals who go above and beyond to meet the needs of their patients.
Unfortunately, not every experience with a nursing home is positive. In some cases, patients may be neglected or even abused by staff members. Here’s what you need to do when facing that situation.
Talk to the Nursing Home Staff
The first step is to talk to the nursing home staff. If you have any concerns, it’s important to voice them as soon as possible. The team should be able to address your concerns and put your mind at ease.
If you’re not satisfied with the response from the staff, don’t hesitate to escalate your concerns. You can contact the nursing home’s administrator or the state licensing agency. There might be a misunderstanding with the staff or a simple explanation for the situation. But if you don’t feel like your concerns get taken seriously, it’s essential to take action.
File a Complaint
If you believe your loved one is being neglected or abused, you can file a complaint with the nursing home or the state licensing agency. Be sure to document everything, including any injuries or changes in behavior.
Your issues might be with a specific staff member. The professional might be going through a difficult time in their personal life or struggling to handle the workload. In that case, you can request a change in staff.
You might also need to file a police report if the situation is serious. Neglect and abuse are against the law, and perpetrators should be held accountable.
You should also contact a nursing home abuse attorney. They can help you navigate the legal process and ensure that your loved one receives the best care.
Get Outside Help
If you don’t feel like your concerns are being taken seriously, it’s time to get outside help. Many organizations can help, including long-term care ombudsmen and advocacy groups.
You can also contact an attorney if your loved one has been seriously injured or abused. They can help you understand your legal options and protect your rights.
No one deserves to be neglected or abused, especially not someone vulnerable. If you have concerns about the care your loved one is receiving, don’t hesitate to take action. With the right help, you can ensure they get the treatment they deserve.
Move Loved One to a New Facility
Sometimes, moving your loved one to a new facility is the best solution. If you’re unhappy with the care, you might find it better to start fresh somewhere else.
You can use resources to find nursing homes in your area. Be sure to read reviews and compare facilities before making a decision. Your options might be farther away than you’d like, but finding a safe and comfortable place for your loved one is essential.
You can also ask for recommendations from friends, family, or doctors. They might know of a facility that would be a good fit for your loved one.
It’s also essential to visit the facility in person. Take a tour and meet with the staff. Please pay attention to how they interact with patients and get a feel for the overall environment.
Change in Circumstances
There are many reasons a nursing home might not be the right fit for your loved one. Maybe their health has declined, and they require more care than the facility can provide. Or perhaps they’re not getting along with the staff or other patients.
In some cases, families can’t afford nursing home care any more. If your financial situation changes, you might need to consider other options.
It’s essential to reassess the situation regularly and make changes as needed. Your loved one’s needs will change over time, and you must ensure they get the best care.
Nursing home abuse and neglect are serious problems, but they’re also rare. Most facilities provide high-quality care for their patients. However, it will be necessary to take action if you have concerns.
Don’t hesitate to talk to the staff or file a complaint if you believe your loved one is getting mistreated. You can also contact an attorney or get outside help from advocacy groups. You might need to move your loved one to a new facility in severe cases.