The physical abuse that is occurring in our Palm Beach County nursing homes is running rampant. Physical abuse is defined as the use of violence or physical force which causes injury, impairment, or bodily harm to the victim. It is not only limited to battery, it also includes assault and the inappropriate restraining between two people. It can be very difficult to spot physical abuse in a nursing home so it is important to be on the lookout for the signs of physical abuse of your loved ones.
- Bruises or abrasions that appear to be injuries from straps or ropes
- Injuries that appear are not getting proper attention from the staff
- Scalding burns, burns from cigarettes, burns from appliances
- Internal injuries can often be identified by pain or malfunctioning organs
- Multicolored bruises
- Bruises that appear to be “wrapped around” especially on a patients arms
- Dislocated joints, broken bones, sprains, fractures
There are other signs that you should be on the lookout for that may indicate that there is physical abuse occurring in your loved one’s nursing home or assisted living facility. They include but are not limited to the following:
- Withdrawal from typical activities that the elderly person enjoys
- Explanations for injuries that don’t add up
- Visits to several different hospitals or treatment centers while the patient has lived in the same area
- A delay between an injury happening and the patient receiving treatment for the injury
- Receiving treatment for the same or similar injuries
- Stranded relationships with the patients friends and/or family
Stopping Elder Physical Abuse
There are several things that you can do to help protect your loved ones that are being taken care of in a nursing home or assisted living facility. It is important to visit as often as possible and be cognizant of the aforementioned signs of physical abuse. When you are visiting your loved ones make sure to speak with them one on one and listen to any concerns that they may express to you. If you suspect that there is physical abuse it is important to report it to the Florida Department of Health. They have a dedicated hotline: 1.800.96.Abuse.
Don’t just stop at reporting the activity. Often times the only way to stop these actions are to hit the nursing home or assisted living facility in their pocketbook. As an elder care abuse lawyer in West Palm Beach I am an advocate for you and your loved ones. Call us today to see how we can help you.