Reporting Nursing Home Abuse in Georgia
Posted on Friday, March 22nd, 2019 at 9:58 pm
The decision for a loved one to be placed in a nursing home or assisted living facility can be a difficult one. Unfortunately, even with copious amounts of research, the nursing home chosen can still have issues and abuse your loved one. If you think that a loved one is being abused at a nursing home, it is imperative that you take action. Reporting the abuse to the proper channels is important, as well as reaching out to a personal injury attorney to find out what courses of legal action might be available.
The first step in reporting nursing home abuse is contacting the Georgia Department of Community Health’s Healthcare Facility Regulation. This department is responsible for “health care planning, licensing, certification and oversight” of various health care facilities and services in Georgia. The department is there to investigate abuse claims made against nursing homes.
Another option for reporting abuse is your local Georgia Ombudsman. Your local ombudsman is equipped with the tools and resources necessary to investigate claims of abuse and help patients and their families. The ombudsman can work closely with other departments, like law enforcement, social services, or other relevant agencies.
In order to catch any abuse that might be occurring, it is important to know the common signs of nursing home abuse or neglect. There are not always obvious physical signs that abuse has occurred. Of course broken bones, bruises, cuts, or other physical injuries are an indication that there could be abuse happening. However, not every injury manifests in physical ways. The following are signs to look for in cases of nursing home abuse or neglect:
- Physical Injuries: As mentioned above, any physical injuries must be investigated and questioned. Accidents do happen, but it is important to still investigate.
- Emotional Changes: You should also be on the lookout for changes in your loved one’s emotions. New habits like biting nails, rocking back and forth, or suddenly becoming withdrawn can be an indication that something bigger is going on. Emotional abuse can be just as dangerous as physical abuse and needs to be taken seriously.
- Bed Sores: If your loved one is constantly experiencing bed sores, this could be an indication that he or she is being neglected. Failure to be taken out of bed can cause bed sores. Check in with your loved one frequently to ensure that he or she is getting up and about if possible.
- Sudden Fear of Staff: Your loved one might suddenly become afraid of certain staff members or refuse to look them in the eye. This is an indication that something occurred between your loved one and the staff. It is time to start asking questions.
You do not want your loved one to suffer. Any changes that occur in behavior of your loved one could be a sign of abuse and needs to be investigated. The personal injury attorneys at Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. are here to help you if your loved one has been abused. You have legal options and many be able to collect damages for injuries your loved one has sustained. Contact us today for a consultation.