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A closer look at behaviors that constitute nursing home neglect

For many New York families, caring for an elderly loved one is a matter of assumed responsibility. However, it can sometimes get to the point where necessary care, resources and attention are better accessible with the assistance of a nursing home facility. When this decision must be made, many families spend considerable time searching for an establishment that demonstrates their commitment to providing the highest quality care. Unfortunately, there are nursing homes that are neglectful in caring for their residents which can ultimately result in patient discomfort, injury and even death in serious cases. Families who understand what behaviors are indicative of neglect can recognize warning signs before it is too late. 

According to nextavenue.org, family members can look for six specific characteristics or behaviors that indicate a serious problem with the way staff are caring for residents. These red flags include the following:

  • Changes in an elderly person's mobility and ability to get from one place to another independently. 
  • Changes in an elderly person's psychological well-being or mental state. Extra sensitivity or over-emotional reactions can be another sign.
  • Noticeable neglect in an elderly person's hygiene and personal care.
  • Suspicious injuries that do not have any reasonable explanation. 
  • Unsanitary environments including old bed sheets, pungent odors and noticeable neglect in a facility's upkeep.
  • Physical impairments resulting from poor nutrition.

Falls are one of the more common injuries sustained by the elderly in nursing homes. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 1,800 nursing home residents suffer fatal injuries each year because of falls. 

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